Thursday, 17 March 2011

JMB (Mike) Hughes

It is with regret that I mention here of the death of J.M.B. (Mike) Hughes who was the last European headmaster of the Penang Free School from 1957 to 1963. He died on 16 Mar 2011 in Okehampton near Exeter in the United Kingdom. His death came five days after the passing of his wife, Jean Hughes. Both had been sick since Christmas with Hughes reportedly having suffered a stroke very recently.

Hughes was before my time as I only entered the School in 1966 but from what I've been learning from the Old Frees who passed through the School during Hughes' tenure, he was a well-liked headmaster. His old students held him in high esteem and the feeling was mutual.

He returned to visit the School many times after he went back to England and his last visit was in the 1990s when he entered the school hall with the headmaster of the day during the usual Monday morning assembly, walking stick in his hand, looking very healthy and strong, and beaming with pride. He spoke to remind the students about the importance of good education and of course, about the School itself.

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