Tribute paid to Exmouth School teacher who inspired pupils

Former Exmouth School teacher John Hall

Former Exmouth School teacher John Hall - Credit: Archant

A Brixington family paid tribute to a ‘heroic’ dad saying he was an ‘inspiration’ to all he met.

Former Exmouth School PE teacher John Hall, 59, died peacefully in his sleep at Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital on Thursday, July 2.

John was a teacher at Exmouth School, which is now the community college, for 18 years until a brain haemorrhage forced him to retire in 1998.

His former wife, Leslie-Anne, said that family life was the most important thing to him and that working at the school was his ‘passion’.

She said: “John has been so inspirational to so many of his pupils, people have told us about the difference he has made to their lives.

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“I can’t imagine him doing anything else – working at the school was more than just a job to him.”

John’s daughter Rebecca said: “He was our hero - there has never been anyone who has encouraged us like him.”

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He grew up in Clyst St Mary after his family moved there when he was eight years old.

John attended Clyst St Mary Primary School before moving on to Exmouth School.

The keen sportsman went on to join the Exeter Judo Club and won awards at national competitions leading to being recommended for a call-up to the national under-21 squad.

In 1974, he suffered a leg injury which prevented him from being selected for the Great Britain Olympic judo team.

After his injury, he studied to become a qualified PE teacher and started work at Exmouth School, in 1980.

John moved into the town a year later after getting married.

John was appointed assistant head of year at the school in 1995 and went on to become head of year.

He was given a masters degree in education and professional studies by Exeter University in 2003.

He survived by his former wife Leslie-Anne, 59, and children Matthew, 24, and Rebecca, 19.

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