Tributes paid to 'inspirational' former Craigroyston headteacher Hugh MacKenzie

Hugh MacKenzie, who published Craigroyston Days in 1995Hugh MacKenzie, who published Craigroyston Days in 1995
Hugh MacKenzie, who published Craigroyston Days in 1995
Mr MacKenzie died after a short illness.

Tributes have been paid to ‘inspirational’ former headteacher of Craigroyston High School Hugh MacKenzie, who died after a short illness.

Mr MacKenzie was headteacher of Craigroyston from 1972 to 1993.

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He wrote a book about his time there, ‘Craigroyston Days’, published in 1995.

Many former pupils have paid tribute to Mr MacKenzie, with many remembering him as a ‘kind and brilliant’ man, and mentioning the trips he took students on around the UK every year – as well as to Europe in 1992.

“I’m very sorry to learn of Hugh Mackenzie's passing. He was a sound rugby man and in professional life Gordon Strachan's headmaster at Craigroyston School. When I interviewed Hugh about his book "Craigroyston Days" he spoke extremely warmly about Gordon both during his schooldays and for keeping in touch,” said Bill Lothian, who played rugby with Hugh MacKenzie for the Edinburgh Golden Oldies side.

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“He was an amazing and unique headteacher and an absolute gentleman - what he did for the school and the area during the time he was headteacher at Craigie was incredible - it was only when I became a teacher that I realised how different Hugh and the school was - RIP Hugh you made a huge difference to 1,000s of Craigie pupils,” wrote Graham Pow on Facebook.

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“Hugh was a brilliant Head Teacher at Craigroyston High School in the 1980s and was responsible for creating an Educational Revolution at Craigie during his time there as the Heidie. Being a student here during what was a very challenging social period was simply incredible, the memories I have will hopefully stay with me forever,” added Peter Wood.

“Hugh Mackenzie’s leadership in the 80s when I lived in West Pilton taught me the importance of lifelong learning and community and respect, all foundational in my own journey as a Headteacher in Pilton and beyond. Thank you Hugh,” wrote Sheila Laing in a tribute on Twitter.

“Sad news of the death of Hugh Mackenzie, inspirational Head Teacher, Craigroyston Community High School. He loved his students and staff and was never afraid to break the rules to that end,” added Isobel Leckie.

Craigroyston Community High School said: “We are extremely saddened to learn that Hugh Mackenzie, former Headteacher of Craigroyston Community High School, has passed away after a short illness.

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“Hugh served as Headteacher from 1972-1993 and during that time, he was a true inspiration to both staff and pupils. Hugh was determined to ensure that school was a place to nurture, care for and encourage the pupils as well as guiding them through their academic qualifications.

“Hugh was a unique man who led Craigroyston on amazing journeys, always believing dreams could be achieved. Former pupils will undoubtedly have fond memories of the annual Craigie Field Trips around the UK as well as Craigie goes to Europe in 1992.

“Our deepest condolences and thoughts go out to Hugh’s wife, Joyce as well as Callum, Kirsty and the grandchildren. You’ll be forever remembered, Mr Mackenzie – rest in peace.”

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