ENGLISH graduates of an Oxford University college gathered to pay tribute to one of their lecturers, who has retired after more than 30 years.

More than 200 former students met at St Anne’s College in Woodstock Road for a reunion to mark the retirement of Dr Ann Pasternak Slater.

Dr Pasternak Slater, Hazel Eardley-Wilmot Fellow in English, joined the college in 1976, after applying for the post of stipendiary lecturer.

Dr Pasternak Slater, 65, said: “I felt very sad at the prospect of retiring but this party was such a joyous occasion and so many of my students were so kind to me – I felt that my life had been worthwhile.”

Dr Pasternak Slater, niece of Dr Zhivago novelist Boris Pasternak, is married to Craig Raine, an English lecturer at New College.

The couple, who live in Park Town, North Oxford, have four grown-up children, Nina, Isaac, Moses and Vaska.

Dr Pasternak Slater added: “When I started at St Anne’s, my daughter Nina was a year old. The college already had a creche in a Nissen hut which had been used to cater for wounded soldiers in the Second World War.”

Dr Pasternak Slater said she was was working on a complete study of novelist Evelyn Waugh, who wrote Brideshead Revisited, which is partly set in Oxford.

College principal Tim Gardam said: “Dr Pasternak Slater has brought her generous intelligence, her unconditional kindness and unerring eye for good writing and literary perceptiveness to the work of more than 500 students over 30 years.”