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Victoria Wood RIP

There have already been a lot of high profile deaths in 2016. Johan Cruyff was probably my biggest sporting hero. Sad to see him go. However the announcement that Victoria Wood has died aged 62 is particularly upsetting for me. The fact that she was one of the most famous Lancastrians – along with Morrissey and Freddie Flintoff – is part of it. It’s always nice to see someone from the same neck of the woods become successful.

But the thing I really liked about Victoria was her ability to help us smile and laugh at ordinary things. I first recall her in Wood and Walters in the early 80’s playing the part of a disaffected Liverpudlian school girl. I’d just started teaching and it all rang so true. Later I saw her in concert a couple of times. She was hilarious in a very self deprecating way. She was able to tell us about how she saw the world and the amusement that it brought her. It was rarely the big things – usually little things that might pass by unnoticed.

I’m not suggesting we should go around laughing at life all the time. There are serious things to be done and decided. However, the passing of Victoria has made me further appreciate the value of a bit of humour in making life more enjoyable for the deliverer and the recipient. The process of change that we are going through in education requires a sense of humour at times. I hope we can all remember that amid the tension.

Here end Radio 4 Thought for Day!

Phil Crompton