COLGATE is to establish an education grant in the name of Barbara Callcott - "Mrs Marsh" - who has died in Noosa.

Ms Callcott became an icon of Australian pop culture in the Colgate toothpaste TV commercials.

She began playing Mrs Marsh, the teacher who dips chalk into ink to show children how toothpaste could protect teeth, in the late 1970s.

She starred in the advertisements for many years, the final ones last year.

Ms Callcott had lived on the Sunshine Coast for many years.

Colgate managing director Chris Pedersen said in honour of Ms Callcott, Colgate would establish an education grant in her name.

"Colgate staff are saddened by the news and extend their condolences to Barbara's family," he said yesterday afternoon.

He said MsCallcott had supported the education of Australian children off screen until this month.