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Posted Sunday, July 14, 2013
Sadly, Len Neary passed away in the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital just after 9pm on Tuesday 24th September. His sister Christine and his Aunt Barbara were with him.
Len touched the lives of many people in the Australian folk scene. He is remembered widely as the first person who put them in touch with live folk music for which they are eternally grateful. Len had a lovely singing voice and for decades he presided over nights of songs at folk clubs, parties and sessions. The golden years of the Friday night sessions at the Glengarry Castle Hotel (captured in part on the double CD “The People have Songs”) inspired many singers to find their voice. He was admired for his gentle disposition, his knowledge and his dry wit. There are many Facebook tributes to Len (eg under Judy Pinder).
Len's health had been deteriorating in recent months and he was admitted to the Royal Prince Alfred hospital in Sydney on 1st September with severe pneumonia. He failed to respond to treatment and he died peacefully on Tuesday night with his Aunt Barbara and sister Christine at his side. (The death notice will appear in the Sydney Morning Herald on Saturday 28 September.)
1.30pm Wednesday 2nd October 2013
Chapel of Simplicity Funerals
59 Enmore Road, Newtown
(just a block beyond where Enmore Road splits off from King Street.)
Afterwards, close family only will accompany the casket to the cemetery for private interment.
Anyone wishing to share a drink in Len's memory after the service in Newtown is invited to an informal gathering at the Glengarry Castle Hotel on the corner of Lawson and Abercrombie Streets, Redfern.
Messages of condolence may be sent to Len’s sister:
PO Box 3295
Photos or recordings - If anyone has photos or recordings of Len they are willing to share, could you please send them to Christine
"One of the first folk singers I met in Sydney in 1976. A gentleman and a great friend. Very sad." (Peter Logue)
"Farewell, Len. You were the first folksinger I saw and heard in Australia. Seems like you were here forever." (Paul Hemphill)
"I remember well the parties in his house when we I lived in Sydney in the late seventies when we used to raise the roof while downing copious beers until all hours. Always friendly and warm, he will be greatly missed." (Cilla Kinross)