It is with sadness that I report the passing of Olive Burgin, Headmaster’s Secretary 1990 – 1999.
Our thoughts are with Olive’s family at this very sad time.
I would like to leave you with this rather fitting tribute written by the Headmaster at the time, Roy Collard, published in the 2000 edition of the Worksopian magazine to mark Olive’s departure.
“Olive Burgin first came to Worksop College in 1990, from Barlborough Hall School and her first job was to help Roger Knight settle in as Headmaster. Three years later she was to have a new boss and once again was presented with the challenge of settling in a new Headmaster. When, eventually, the time came for Olive to retire in December 1999, so close had my working relationship with Olive become that her departure was like what I imagine a divorce to be.
For most parents, Olive was the first point of contact with the College, whether in telephoning to make an appointment to have a tour of the school or when ringing, perhaps in anger, to speak urgently to me. Always reassuring, unfailingly polite and informative, Olive’s gift was always to allow the caller to feel that she had all the time in the world to speak to them, even though, as in any busy office, time was at a premium. Through her ten years at the College, Olive played a pivotal role in helping to promote the College’s good name and demonstrating to parents of prospective pupils the strength of individual care that they could expect for their children as members of the college.
Olive was not one of those secretaries who watched the clock, never being prepared to leave her desk until a day’s tasks were completed. This sometimes meant still being in her office after 6.00pm or, such was her dedication, even taking work home with her. It is not only I who will miss Olive greatly, for she was very much part of the community and a frequent supporter of school events, especially those involving Music or Drama. Many a pupil has benefited from Olive’s advice, particularly those a little unsure of etiquette when visiting her office or mine.
As I look back on my first six years at Worksop, I know how much I owe to Olive for all that she has done to support me and help maintain my peace of mind. So much of her work is unseen by others but I know I speak for many when I say that Olive is highly respected by all members of the staff at the College and her work much appreciated by all parents who come into contact with her. As she leaves us to enjoy a busy retirement in North Anston, continuing to pursue her many cultural interests, we all wish her health, happiness and contentment. We are all greatly in her debt.”