I only joined Kent College part way through the first year of sixth form following some ill-advised and immature behaviour at a previous school so when I first walked into the appointed Chemistry lab that was to be my first registraion I was hugely nervous and anxious as to how I would be received by both my new fellow classmates and also my first staff point of contact. I pushed open the door and was immediately greeted by a man who appeared taller than he was as he was standing behind a desk on a rasied surface in front of a huge blackboard.
Clad in a long tie, open jacket and round glasses the man behind the desk beamed with a warm smile and welcoming face. “You must be Mr Harding” he said at once with a tone of voice that put me immediately at ease and within a few short moments I was introduced to the rest of the students in my form group and by the time we all headed off to the morning assembley I felt like I was “part of the team.”
I know that Mr Fell had a great way of putting students at ease whilst always being someone that demanded resect due to his charasmatic way of teaching that both inspired and invigorated. Throughout those initial months as the “new boy” at KC, Mr Fell would often informally check in with me and ensure that I was okay, which was both encouraging and gratifying as at the time I was sixteen so not exactly a young child joining primiary school for the first time, however he recognised the difficulty for a teenage student joining a year group that had clearly bonded over many years previosuly together but he both nurtured and ensured that I became and felt very much a part of that group of students.
I remember my time at Kent College with huge fondness and will always owe a great debt of gratitude to Mr Fell for making me part of the family there as well as his enthusiasm for my keen interest in magic at the time. He would often encourage me to practice new tricks on fellow classmates prior to mornign registration and respond with infectious delight and positivity – I would later come to realise that these early performances that Mr Fell encouraged with subtle yet great enthusiasm would be a great nurturing point for me as I went on to become a professional magician following my A levels; a career that I am still in. I can absolutely trace back being pushed into the “impromptu limelight” by a form tutor that had a passion for getting the very best out of his students and found great joy in seeing every individual student become the best that they could be with his encouragement.
A bright light in the legacy anf history of KC has gone out but it will shine on in the hundreds of people whom he helped to go on to have the confidence to fulfil their potential from his inspirational leadership. His immaculate Windsor knotted tie and Green Ford Ka (iconic during my time with him at KC) will be imprinted on my memories forever and always be fond ones.
A “proper teacher” in every sense of the word; masterful, knowledgable, inspiring, firm and friendly – Mr Fell has everyones best interests at heart and he will be sorely missed.
Thank you for everything Sir. x