Cicely Read trained at Bedford from 1909 – 1911 and returned to the college in 1918 and became vice principal in the 1930’s.
The 1930’s and 40’s saw the decline of Ling’s formal style of gymnastics as the discipline became transformed into a freer and more expressive discipline. Teaching became child, rather than subject, focused and marked the birth of Modern Educational Gymnastics. Alongside this modern dance was also becoming increasingly popular. This was a passion of Cicely Read and she arranged a visit to the college by Rudolf Laban. By 1940 BPTC Modern Educational dance was truly embedded into the curriculum and Bedford was regarded as a pioneering force.
Such was her reputation, in 1945, Cicely was chosen to succeed Margaret Stansfeld as the Principal of the college. Unfortunately, her reign only lasted for 4 years, she died suddenly in 1949.
Cicely Read Conducting at Wembley in 1937