The charismatic former landlord of the Red Lion in Brackley, Brian Wiles, has died aged 77 at his home in Spain.
Son and current Red Lion landlord Nigel Wiles said before his father went into the pub trade he had played the trumpet for the Salvation Army and performed with amateur dramatic societies in Luton before taking over the Red Lion in November 1977.
Mr Wiles added: “The bar became his stage for the next 30 years. As I finished my speech during his funeral service I said ‘God loves a tryer,’ and he certainly gave 100 per cent, he was a work hard, play hard sort of character.
“But I’ve had so many people come in a pay tribute to him saying he was a gentleman and he had been so kind to them. And there were about 125 people at his funeral.”
Mr Wiles also fondly remembers his dad taking over a VE Day celebration in the Market Square.
“He wasn’t part of the celebration,” he said. “But he joined in the with the singing, basically it was war time songs. Then he took to the stage for about an hour and sang to huge applause, that was the kind of guy he was.
“He enjoyed being the centre of the show and was for a lot of his life.”
In 1980 Brian Wiles played his part in resurrecting a Brackley tradition when along with Morris Man John Weaver, he applied to have the pub open for 6am on May 1 to cater for those enjoying the Brackley May Day.
On Sunday, August 25, Mr Wiles is inviting any one who wants to raise a glass to his father to the pub for 2pm.
Poem handed to Nigel Wiles by an anonymous mourner for his funeral in Spain.
I first met Brian in Cafe Almoradi
A colourful man, his cloths were far from dowdy!
As time went on I grew to know him better
I found out he was one of life’s go getters.
Running a pub called the Red lion in Brackley for many years
Is where he met Carole and was well respected amongst his peers
They moved to Almoradi and made many a good friend
And if you ever needed it, a listening ear he would lend
The kindest of people and an opinion you would heed
Generous to a fault, always doing a good deed
He enjoyed Almoradi Amigoes, supporting the local football team
Loved his bingo at John and Jens, when he shouted house, his face would beam
Running quizzes at Bar Elite gave him much pleasure
Remembering his jokes and sing songs the customers will treasure
He enjoyed his wine and often finished with a brandy
And a lift home at the end of the evening came in handy
One of life’s true gentlemen, he will be remembered for
Not a bad bone in his body, his memory we will adore