Eventually her efforts began to be appreciated. Perhaps with ‘Every Child Matters’ (2003) the political tide had turned? Funding was found for a redevelopment of the site and she was closely involved with the design. Her ethos of re-insertion was recognised in the new name for the ‘school’: ‘The Bridge’.
It took another 4 years for the work to be completed, and the building was named in her honour. While I am sure that she will have kept a place in the hearts and minds of all who knew her, it was good to see this solid reminder of her contribution – and how much better than a tombstone lost in a weedy cemetery?
A further reminder in the garden. We were invited to the unveiling and her immediate manager made a little speech whereby he demonstrated that he had no understanding of what Maggie had set out to do. It was encouraging that one of the staff members stood up to correct him in fairly strong terms: “No, that was not what Maggie was trying to do!”
And here we are – where she did her best work. We can only hope that some of her beliefs and values still inform the lives of staff and students there. I was on a visit to Stratford-upon-Avon when I had a call from the local paper …