EMOTIONAL tributes have been paid to an inspirational Wirral teacher who has passed away.

Philomena Rough taught English at Upton Hall FCJ girls' school in Upton for many years and was described by pupils as a 'legend'.

She will be laid to rest at a service in St Joseph's Church, Upton on March 9.

Announcing news of Mrs Rough's passing on social media, the school tweeted: "We were sorry to learn yesterday of the passing of Mrs Rough.

"Mrs Rough was a well-loved, inspirational teacher of English at Upton for many years.

"We will remember her in our prayers."

Former students going back as far as 1974 have also posted tributes on Facebook, sharing memories of a hugely respected teacher and the powerful impact her teaching had.

Among them was Helen Frances Soutar, who wrote: "She was my most inspirational teacher and because of Mrs Rough I love books and I love to read every day. A truly wonderful teacher. RIP Mrs Rough. Xx”

Liza Dan added: "Oh it's very sad to hear this. She was a wonderful woman and a great teacher. I quake at the sight of an ill-placed apostrophe and it's all down to Mrs Rough's excellent training! RIP."

Rebecca Lucy Weston wrote: "RIP to a truly wonderful lady, a brilliant teacher and a friend to all."

Local writer Laura Brown reflected on a "wonderful English teacher who made me see words and language in a way I'd never considered before.

"Language could be used to create pictures, just as easily as with brushes and paint. She was a joy."

One former pupil said: "My first English teacher in 1984! We received the "I'm rough by name ...” speech, but grew to love her lessons.

"We had a ban on Enid Blyton and a strong steering on the grammar front! An inspirational lady. Rest in peace x”

Cheryl Ursula wrote: "What a legend and an amazing legacy she has left xxx"