A blue plaque has been unveiled in honour of a former Labour MP for Epping who saved 4,000 children escape the Spanish Civil War.

Dame Leah Manning is known for being president of the National Union of Teachers and becoming MP for Islington in 1931 and for Epping in 1945.

She is also remembered for arranging the evacuation of the Basque children in 1937 and co-founding Cambridge’s first birth control clinic.

More than 40 years after her death, a blue plaque was commemorated on site of Cambridge’s former Ragged School, now owned by Anglia Ruskin University on Wednesday, January 15.

Epping Forest Guardian:

Dame Leah Manning achieved many things for Epping, Cambridge and Islington until her death in 1977

The location was chosen in honour of where Dame Leah helped transform education for poor children by working as a teaching from 1908 to 1917.

Mary Joannou, professor of literary history and women's writing at Anglia Ruskin University, said: “As a young, idealist teacher, Manning taught children in classes of 70.

"They were often exhausted from lack of sleep, hungry and cold, and they huddled around a stove for warmth."

Dr Joannau added: "She was a lifelong champion of causes affecting women and children.

"Nothing would have given her more pleasure to know that her own pioneering struggle to transform the lives of children is remembered at the building where she began her career."