A TOWN hall is paying tribute to an RAF hero and prodigy who fought in the second World War before becoming head of Hedingham School.

Fred Pawsey was born and bred in Alpheton, Sudbury, living his life from a farm worker's son to a headmaster and magistrate.

A screen in the Heritage Centre of the town hall will be telling the story of the local heroes life, before, during and after the second World War.

Sgt Pawsey was born in 1913, and by just ten years old he had been awarded a scholarship from Sudbury Grammar School.

In 1936, in his early twenties, Sgt Pawsey joined the RAF as an apprentice technician when fears of war were rumbling.

He fought in the RAF until the end of the war, acting as one of the ground crew during the Battle of Britain in 1940, and becoming a sergeant not long after, when he was selected to be among the first RAF candidates to be trained in the US.

By 1943 he was back in the war zone in Tunisia as a flight lieutenant, protecting allied convoys in the Mediterranean and covering landings in Italy before landing in occupied Europe on a clandestine mission to liaise with partisans in Yugoslavia.

The citation with the award of his Distinguished Flying Cross records that he flew 70 missions and distinguished himself as a fearless leader and a skilful pilot.’

Following the end of the war, Sgt Pawsey trained as a teacher before becoming the head of Hedingham Secondary School in Sible Hedingham, and then deputy head of the comprehensive school that stands in it's place now.

Outside school he was a magistrate, chairman of the parish council, wrote books and gave talks on local history and the Suffolk dialect.

In 2016 he passed away aged 96 in Cavendish.

One of the last occasions he was seen in public was at Sudbury Heritage Centre for the unveiling of Stephen Binks large-scale painting of an American air force bomber limping home over Sudbury.

The Heritage Centre is open during normal office hours on weekdays and from 10am until 12.30pm on Saturdays.

There is no charge for admission.