Gladys Pyle – The Queen of Spinnaker 1930-2021
Spinnaker Chorus are saddened by the recent loss of Gladys Pyle a founder member and our greatest supporter. Gladys was an original member of Purbrook Harmony Chorus that formed in 1970 and became the first Sweet Adelines Chorus in the UK. She took to barbershop singing with great enthusiasm and loved to perform and entertain. Her debut performance was in 1973 at the Guildhall, Portsmouth. Gladys attended the first British Barbershop Association convention in Brighton in 1975 when Purbrook Harmony won joint first prize. She went on to perform and compete around the UK and in the USA. In 2004 Spinnaker Chorus was formed and Gladys was a founding member. She continued to sing and compete into her 80s before becoming an Honorary member and Chair of the Spinnaker Tea Company. Gladys was a free spirit who loved to party and was generous to a fault. Her jam making skills were legendary and she always brought laughter and fun to any Chorus get-together. Gladys rarely missed a Spinnaker rehearsal and joined the Chorus on sing-outs and on trips to convention bringing home made Spinnaker banners, her enormous smile, and her amazing energy with her. Gladys loved to dress up and to wear tiaras and soon became known as the Queen of Spinnaker. She was a true one-off and will be much missed as a great friend with a heart of gold, wicked sense of humour and a personality that lit up every occasion.
Jill Cook-Spinnaker Chair