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Former Bury St Edmunds teacher killed in crash in Cambridgeshire

PUBLISHED: 10:10 06 December 2017 | UPDATED: 15:10 06 December 2017

Mark Jones with Year 10 students Jamie Kinnell, left, and James Parker

Mark Jones with Year 10 students Jamie Kinnell, left, and James Parker

Archant

A former teacher at the King Edward VI school, in Bury St Edmunds, has been killed in a crash near the Suffolk Cambridgeshire border.

Mark Jones. Picture: ST IVO SCHOOL Mark Jones. Picture: ST IVO SCHOOL

A former teacher at the King Edward VI school, in Bury St Edmunds, has been killed in a car crash near the Suffolk Cambridgeshire border.

Thirty-eight-year-old Mark Jones, who lived in Elms Road, Freckenham, died in the accident on the A1123 at Haddenham, near Ely.

He was driving a blue Mazda MX5 which was in collision with a white Vauxhall Astra Envoy at about 7.50am on Friday, December 1, and it sparked a huge emergency service response, closing the road in both directions.

He joined the school in December 2015 on a maternity cover in media and went on to teach drama and physics before he left in August this year and went to St Ivo School, in St Ives. The tragedy happened while he was on his way to teach at St Ivo.

King Edward VI school head teacher Lee Walker said: “Mark Jones will be remembered very fondly as a creative and inspiring colleague and friend.

“His knowledge, warmth and ‘joie de vivre’ touched the lives of those fortunate to have known him.

“Mark demonstrated consistent belief in the students he taught, many of whom have paid tribute to him as a ‘funny’ and ‘inspirational’ teacher.

“He will be sorely missed by the King Edward VI School community.”

And Sam Griffin, headteacher at St Ivo, said: “Mark was a teacher of film and media studies at St Ivo School where he had worked since September. He had previously taught at King Edward Vl, in Bury St Edmunds, and at Samuel Ward Academy, in Haverhill.

“At St Ivo we are devastated by the sudden and untimely loss of an outstanding teacher and friend. In his short time with us he made an enormous impact on all those he came into contact with.

“His enthusiasm for his subject and for life was huge and infectious. His irreverent sense of humour and sheer positivity rubbed off on all those he worked with.

“Mark threw himself into life at St Ivo. He brought high levels of skill to his work in film and media introducing many new ideas and linking us with industry professionals. He was also an excellent pianist and was playing for our production of ‘West Side Story’.

“Students and staff have received access to counselling and support this week.

“We have opened a book of condolence and today a group of students released butterfly balloons as a tribute to reflect Mark’s belief in reincarnation. We will be planning a more permanent memorial for the future.

“St Ivo School is a richer place for having had Mark work with us and we miss him dearly.”

The King Edward VI School website also posted a fullsome tribute message which said: “We are deeply shocked and saddened to learn of the death of former King Edward VI teacher, Mark Jones. Mark was killed in a car accident on Friday.

“Mark was an exceptional teacher. He was creative, passionate and talented; all in equal measure.

“He joined the staff team in December 2015 on a maternity cover in media, yet demonstrated his immense versatility by going on to teach drama and physics.

“Whatever the subject matter, Mark taught with authority, proficiency and humour. As a virtuosic pianist, he happily shared his skill with the cast of ‘Oliver!’, taking on the role of rehearsal accompanist. He also helped direct the show, always motivating and inspiring those around him.

“While maintaining utter professionalism, Mark made no secret of any part of who he was.

“As a result, he was a very special role model to a great many students.

“He led ‘Boys’ Talk’ assemblies demonstrating, once again, both his hugely amiable character and his natural ability to command respect.

“The prevailing mood here at King Edward VI School is one of deep sadness. Rising to the surface, however, are the memories of a wonderfully positive man who we were privileged to have called a colleague and a friend.

“May you rest in peace, Mark.”

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