A member and volunteer from the earliest days of the Society, Ron was always very willing to get involved on the publicity side of things.
He would be at the forefront of anything musical or theatrical, and helped with the various performances at the Methodist Church during the Society’s Grand Victorian Ryde Weekend in July 2011 (2/24), which commemorated 175 years of the Royal Victoria Arcade. He even played the role of Father Christmas in the yet-to-be-restored basement of the Arcade, listening to MP Andrew Turner’s Christmas wishes! (2/30)
Ever the showman, and especially happy in front of a microphone, Ron organised fund-raising musical evenings for the Society at Smallbrook Stadium, and hosted his own birthday parties at the Fleming Arms, Binstead (5/31), and then for his 90th, and last, at the New Holmwood Hotel, Cowes. Always unforgettable occasions, guests were encouraged to join in with his renditions of popular songs from his younger days.
Apart from the musical side, Ron wished to display his artistic side, and set about painting another photoboard to help fund raising for the Society. Unfortunately, due to his increasing lack of mobility he was unable to finish it, but we still have fond memories of a beret-clad Parisian artist look-alike perched on his stool, paintbrush in hand!
Ron was very proud of his long and close connection with the whole of the Minghella family, and in recent years Society President and Vice President could often be found having afternoon tea in the cafe at Briddlesford Farm.
Ron was always very cheerful, supportive and positive, even in the last couple of years when his failing health slowed him down and caused him to move to Cowes to be near his daughter. He was a one-off, and will be sorely missed.