Rugbeians invited to pay tribute to beloved former Headmaster - The Rugby Observer

Rugbeians invited to pay tribute to beloved former Headmaster

Rugby Editorial 11th Apr, 2024   0

RUGBEIANS will say farewell to a beloved former headmaster at a memorial service next week.

Dr Rex Pogson died last month after he was injured in a car accident in December.

He was Headmaster of Lawrence Sheriff School (LSS) from 1985 to 1998, and was active in the community through his work and support for The Bradby Club, St Andrew’s Church and The Rotary Club of Rugby.

Speaking on behalf of his family, wife Marion Pogson said: “Our beloved Rex was a devoted, kind, loving and caring husband, a wonderful father to our children and a grandfather full of fun to our grandchildren.

“His loss to us is incalculable and we shall miss him very much.”

Rex Pogson was born in 1947 in Lytham St Anne’s. During childhood, he developed a lifelong love of cricket and the arts – particularly Shakespeare.

He gained a first class honours degree in history at King’s College, Cambridge, and stayed on to do a PhD – when he met Marion who was studying at Homerton College. They married in 1971.

His first teaching jobs were in Cambridge and Hull – where he and Marion started their family. First, they adopted Richard – who sadly passed away in July of last year following brain cancer – and then they had Jessica. Lucy arrived once they moved to Kent, where Rex had taken up a Deputy Head position – still just in his early 30s.

As well as teaching history, he helped to coach cricket and put on drama productions – passions he brought with him on his next move to Rugby when he took on the role of Headmaster at Lawrence Sheriff School.

While at Sheriff, he put on numerous plays and musicals including Smike, Drake, The Beggar’s Opera and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. He also wrote an original show with long term friend Graham Westcott – Polo and the Khan – which went on to win a national award following a performance in London’s Queen Elizabeth Hall.

He created the Arts Zone on behalf of Warwickshire County Council, championing how the arts can be important to those from less advantaged backgrounds.

He became an active member of Rotary soon after moving to Rugby, attended and supported St Andrew’s Church, and was a Director for the Diocesan Board of Education.

During what his family described as a ‘non-stop retirement’, he became a trustee at a new school in Houlton, supported and chaired youth charity the Bradby Club, remained involved with LSS, continued with the Diocesan Board of Education and with Rotary, and in recent years became a Director for May Blossom Farm.

He directed shows with the Rugby Operatics and Musicals Society, and appeared as Professor Higgins in My Fair Lady. He collaborated with Rugby Theatre, sang in the Rugby Philharmonic Choir, and was a member of Rugby Music Union.

He was also a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and often visited the Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford. His wider charitable and environmental interests included National Trust, English Heritage and the RSPB.

He was a keen follower of all sports, a Manchester City fan, an active golf club member and regularly took his family to test cricket matches and 20/20 games.

He was a family man and always put family first, even during his full career and active community work. He loved spending time with his grandchildren and together they would draw, paint, read and play football.

Lawrence Sheriff Headteacher Teresa Mpofu said she learned of Dr Pogson’s death ‘with great sadness’.

She added: “He has left a loving legacy of always seeing the best in people. Our thoughts, prayers and love are with his wife Marion and his daughters, Jessica and Lucy.

“A reminder that we should make every moment count and let those who matter to us most know how much we love them.”

A spokesperson for the Old Laurentian Society said: “His death will come as a shock to many, and our thoughts are with Marion and his family. May he rest in peace.”

County Councillor Yousef Dahmash said Dr Pogson was an ‘inspirational’ headmaster who ‘defined a significant period of my life growing up’, adding: “Rest in peace Dr Pogson, they don’t make them like you anymore.”

The Rector of St Andrew’s Church, Canon Edmund Newey, said: “It is hard to believe that a man so alive as Rex is no longer with us, but what a blessing he has been to us and to everyone who knew him. May he rest in peace and rise in glory.”

A celebration of Rex Pogson’s life will be held on Thursday April 18 at 3pm at St Andrew’s Church. The family have requested family flowers only.

Donations can be made in his memory to The Bradby Club via, The Myton Hospice via, and The Children’s Society via


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