AT A LOVINGLY tended grave in Horsforth Cemetery a small group of children and their headmistresses recently laid red roses in memory of a woman who has had an impact on all their lives.

Generations of children have passed through the doors of the Froebelian School since its opening more than 100 years ago. And staff and pupils still make a point of remembering the school’s founder Mary Louise Hoe. who died 82 years ago.

The story of how the daughter of an English stationmaster brought the ideas of a German educationalist to Horsforth is told in a centenary booklet produced on behalf of the school in 2013 by former pupil, historian Mark Saville.

Friedrich Froebel, born in 1782, went on to have a significant impact on the world of education. A pioneer of education for young children, he believed in learning through play and developed the concept of the kindergarten.

In 1874 a Froebel Society was established in London and a training college – the Froebel Educational Institute - opened in 1894.

When she founded her school in 1913 Miss Hoe named it after the famous educationalist and joined forces with Froebelian trained teacher Doris Hunt.

When the school opened in Horsforth at 11 Riseholme Terrace - know today at 59 New Road Side - it had just 10 pupils.

Froebel pioneered early years’ learning and the school still follows this tradition, educating children from the age of three years in Kindergarten classes.