Family, friends, fellow singers and ex-colleagues are to gather at Beech Grove Primary School on Saturday 20 June to celebrate the life of well-known local Welshman Glyn Evans who died in May just 3 months after reaching his 100th birthday. Glyn’s many friends and acquaintances from Wellington and Taunton are invited to the school where he taught throughout his career.
He had originally begun training as a dentist but World War 2 interrupted his studies. Following demob from the Tank Regiment and teacher-training he came to Wellington and taught here – first in Corums Lane then, when the school was relocated, at Courtland Road – until his retirement. Glyn died peacefully at The Court where he had been a resident since the end of last year. He left his remains to medical science.
Glyn will be remembered fondly, not least by fellow singers in the Rivertones Chorus which he founded and whose Life President he was. When he reached 99 he was officially the country’s oldest barbershop chorus singer. His last competitive performance at barbershop championships with The Rivertones was in 2008 when he was 93. The Rivertones helped to celebrate his 100th birthday at The Anchor Inn at Hillfarance in February.
His friends in the town include patrons at The Cottage Inn in Swains Lane where he was a regular customer after his wife’s illness and death in 2000. He was also a member of Wellington Operatic Society and appeared in many of their productions.
In an interview with www.aroundwellington.co.uk last year he said, “I started singing at Pontypridd Baptist Chapel when I was still in Infants’ School and I’ve been singing all my life since then. I had 3 brothers and 2 sisters and we used to sing in the St David’s Day Parades round the town. Since then I’ve always sung the harmony parts and every voice too – bass, baritone, even soprano.” He explained how he came to live in Wellington: “After the war I needed to go back to university to train,” he explained, “but then my sister, who was a teacher, suggested I do a teacher conversion course instead. When I qualified I wanted to find a school in small county town where there was something going on – and chose Wellington. My first school was in Coram’s Lane (now the Adult Education Centre) and when that became Beech Grove I went there and stayed until I retired. One of my former pupils, Peter Glover, is now Rivertones Chorus Director.”
The celebration of Glyn’s life at Beech Grove from 1pm to 3pm on Saturday 20 June is open to everyone who knew him and would like to share in his remembrance.