‘Let’s remember our forgotten prince Henry’, says retired teacher

First published in News

A retired history teacher is calling on Otley to do more to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the death of Prince Henry.

The prince, whose name graces the town’s second-ary school, died suddenly of typhoid when he was just 18 on November 6, 1612.

Prince Henry’s Grammar School, founded under Royal Charter by Prince Henry’s father, King James I, celebrated its own 400th birthday four years ago.

But Dave Welbourne, who was head of history at Benton Park School in Rawdon for many years until his retirement in 2006, thinks the town as a whole should also do something to mark the prince’s passing.

He said: “I definitely think Otley could do more to remember Prince Henry.

“I am a great believer in people knowing their local history, and when it fits into national events or celebrates milestones such as anniversaries, it should be publicised.

“And if a school’s named after somebody, I think people should know something about the significance of the name.”

The call comes as the National Portrait Gallery prepares to open a three-month exhibition dedicated to Prince Henry – The Lost Prince: The Life and Death of Henry Stuart – which will run from October 18.

Head teacher at Prince Henry’s Grammar School, Janet Sheriff, said: “We haven’t got any plans to do any special celebrations for this anniversary.

“There were significant celebrations for the 400th anniversary of the founding of the school just a few years ago. This anniversary is likely to be highlighted in history lessons and through year group assemblies.”

Determined to raise awareness about the short life of the prince, Mr Welbourne – who has written numerous articles on local history and an A Level text book – has written his own account of Henry’s life, entitled Who Was Prince Henry?

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