TRIBUTES have been paid to a former Prudhoe Community High School teacher who has died aged 82.

Alan Hamilton, of Stocksfield, was said by his family to be a product of 1940’s North-East England - a boy from a traditional, working class background who progressed through hard work, enthusiasm, and competitive nature.

Born February 6, 1938, in Denton Burn, he was brought up in Ryton with sisters, Nancy and Joan, where he was a pupil at the town’s schools and a choirboy at the Holy Cross.

He later went on to study at Hookergate Grammar School, which he always regarded as one of the most enjoyable times of his life. He would follow the school’s motto of ‘non sine pulvere palmae’ (meaning ‘no glory (or honour) without hard work’) throughout his life.

A passionate sportsman, Mr Hamilton would spend hours honing his football skills using an old, case ball that had been stitched together with string. He later played for his school, as well as the Derwent Valley Boys ‘three years young’. He was also an excellent sprinter - representing Durham in the 100 yards relay team, which came second nationally. And, at one point, he was even the youngest FA Full License holder, which he would keep for 18 years.

In the mid-60’s, golf increasingly became Mr Hamilton’s sport of choice. As a category one player, getting down to two handicap, he was crowed the club champion at Tyneside Golf Club and Stocksfield Golf Club, having played league golf for both.

Mr Hamilton, who died on August 18, met his wife, Marlene, in 1956, in Worcester.

After his stint at Worcester, he went on to Carnegie College, in Leeds, where his burgeoning interest in teaching and coaching was cemented.

Mr Hamilton was a family man, proud of his three children and five grandchildren, and particularly enjoyed big gatherings in his garden, where he produced industrial quantities of vegetables each year.

He had a 40-year career in education, first in Coventry and for 13 years at Prudhoe Community High School.

His Open University degree would then see him secure a post as a education adviser, in North Tyneside, going on to become an Ofsted inspector and later a register inspector.

Mr Hamilton worked until he was 63, providing advice to Newcastle City Council on new sports facilities, and until this year, wrote articles on education for the Courant.