Balloon tribute is paid to tragic college teacher

Balloon release tribute for Runshaw tutor Agnes Parkinson
Balloon release tribute for Runshaw tutor Agnes Parkinson

Runshaw College has paid a moving tribute to a beloved teacher who died in a car crash.

Agnes Parkinson’s travel and tourism students released 350 colourful balloons in her memory on Tuesday, raising money for a charity which was “close to her heart”.

“It was very sad but a lovely tribute - it was a really moving event”

Runshaw spokesman Tim Cahill

Mum-of-three Agnes, 40, and her partner Stephen Rigbye, 38, were both fatally injured when their car careered out of control near Mawdesley and crashed into a wall on March 30.

She had worked as a part-time teacher in the School of Tourism and Hospitality at the Langdale Road campus since 2011.

College spokesman Tim Cahill said: “To commemorate the sad loss of Agnes Parkinson, we held a special balloon release for the Lupus UK charity last Tuesday outside the college’s on-site Foxholes restaurant.

“It was very sad but a lovely tribute. It was a really moving event.

“The release was the idea of her Year 2 travel and tourism students.

“We raised £300 for the charity; Agnes’s late brother had lupus and her sister has it now, so the charity was close to her heart.”

Shortly after her death, Runshaw College paid tribute to the “wonderfully warm and caring person who met every challenge with a huge smile.”

A college statement said: “Her energy and positivity was infectious and she was a well-respected, dedicated teacher who made a huge impact of the lives of the young people she taught.

“Tributes from students say it was a privilege to be taught by Agnes who was not only an excellent teacher but a very kind-hearted person.”

Her family, including her children, twins Anna and Sarah, 18, and nine-year-old Scarlett, described Agnes, who lived in Mawdesley, as “a devoted mother, loving daughter, loyal sister and fun-loving friend.”

They added: “She lived life to the fullest and touched everyone she met.”