A HEADTEACHER who taught thousands of Barnsley pupils over a long career has died at the age of 103.

Joan Shaw, nee Barker, was Barnsley’s youngest head at Blackburn Lane School in 1953 before moving to St Matthew’s where she served throughout the 1960s and 1970s.

She was born on February 29, 1920 – on a leap year – in Walthamstow, London.

Her parents, Alfred and Eva Barker once told Joan that there were only five ‘leap year’ babies born in London in 1920, and that they were happy they had one of them.

Step-granddaughter Fiona Hall said: “Joan was married to Kenneth Shaw, headteacher at Hickleton School, and the former organist at St Mary’s Church until his death in 1979.

“In recent years she moved into the Orchard Views Care Home, where she passed away peacefully on New Year’s Eve.

“Her funeral will be held at Barnsley Crematorium, Ardsley, on February 2 at 12.10pm.”