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Louie Burrows

Louisa (known as Louie) Burrows was born in Ilkeston on 13th February 1888, the eldest child of Alfred and Louisa Ann Burrows. The family moved to Quorn in 1908 and lived at Coteshale, 33 Chaveney Road. Louie's father was a peripatetic handicraft teacher and moved his family to Quorn from Cossall, Nottinghamshire when he moved schools.

Louie was at one time engaged to D. H Lawrence (from December of 1910 to February 1912) and he based the character of Ursula on her in his famous work The Rainbow'. She was also his inspiration for the poem 'Kisses in the Train'.

Louie had met Lawrence at Nottingham University College and both of them became teachers - he at Croydon and she at Leicester. In 1909 she became headmistress at Ratcliffe on the Wreake for two years. Lawrence often visited Louie by arriving at Quorn Great Central Railway Station on the train from Marylebone. In 1910 Lawrence wrote to his mother, who was ill in Leicester Hospital " I have been to Leicester today and have met a girl who has always been warm to me - like a sunny happy day - and I've asked her to marry me: in the train quite unpremeditated between Rothley and Quorn".

In a letter to Louie he says "When I think of you, it is like thinking of life. You will be the first woman to make the earth glad for me, You are strong and rosy as the gates of Eden. You are like Canaan - rich and fruitful and glad, and I love you" Lawrence made his conditions for marriage that he should have saved 100 in cash and have achieved 120 a year income. In 1912 however, Lawrence caused much grief when he met Freida Weekley and left an unhappy Louise. She remained devoted to him and in 1930 visited his grave at Vence in France.

Louie Burrows was headmistress at Quorn Infants School from 1911 to 1924 before moving eventually to Newry Primary School in Leicester. From the records she was obviously a very good head teacher. She also left her mark by her efforts to fight for the rights of women teachers and became a key figure in organising meetings in Leicestershire. In 1940 she married Frederick Heath. She retired in 1941 and died in 1962

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 Submitted on: 2009-07-19
 Submitted by: Kathryn Paterson
 Artefact ID: 296
 Artefact URL: www.quornmuseum.com/display.php?id=296
 Print: View artefact in printer-friendly page or just on its own (new browser tab).

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