An Epsom school which raised £22,000 in memory of an “inspirational” teacher who died from pancreatic cancer has been presented with an award.

Alan Celine, who taught maths at Rosebery School in White Horse Drive, passed away just eight weeks after he was diagnosed with the devastating illness.

He was a teacher and senior leader there for nine years before he was told he had pancreatic cancer last October.

The school’s community rallied behind him with support, organising streams of purple-themed fundraising activities throughout his battle.

This included purple carving paintings, baking blueberry muffins in food technology classes, hosting a “purple clothes day” and wearing self-awareness ribbons.

Now the school has been presented with the Pancreatic Cancer UK Star Award for its “outstanding fundraising” in tribute of the late Mr Celine.

Rosebery was nominated for the award, one out of seven given out across the UK, after they fulfilled Alan’s “greatest wish” in supporting research into pancreatic cancer.

Headteacher Ros Allen said: “We were thrilled and honoured to be nominated for a Star Award for the fundraising that the school had carried out in the name of our much-loved colleague Alan Celine.

“It was Alan’s greatest wish that we would raise funds for research so that others will not suffer in the way that he and his family have.

“It brought him great comfort before he died that we had raised such a significant amount and he would have loved the opportunity to speak to the researchers to hear what a difference his legacy is going to make.

“The creativity and generosity of the school community, as well as our abiding love for Alan will ensure that we continue to support the wonderful work of this charity.”

The award was presented by Pancreatic Cancer UK’s chief executive Diana Jupp at the charity’s annual summit.

This event comprised more than 250 researchers, medical professionals, policy makers and patients who gathered to hear specialists talks about the latest research, as well as first-hand accounts.

She said: “I was delighted to present the award to Rosebery School. I can’t thank the teachers, pupils and the school community enough for all their support and the outstanding commitment they have shown to helping us take on pancreatic cancer.

“The funds they have raised in Alan’s memory will help us offer vital support to other patients and families and, crucially, invest in the research to help us see the breakthroughs we urgently need to improve survival for this devastating disease.”

Around 534 people are diagnosed with pancreatic cancer every year in Surrey and Sussex, according to the charity.

It is said to be the deadliest of all the common cancers, with fewer than seven per cent of patients living for five years.

The charity also says it’s the “quickest-killing” cancer, as one in four people with it die within a month of being diagnosed.