Notable Members Past and Present (A)

Notable Past and Present Members of the Royal South Australian Yacht Squadron


A collection of short biographies of some of the most interesting and successful people who have been members of the Squadron over the last 150 years.  Additional information and photographs can be found under the RSAYS Archives tab.  Please advise the Squadron History Group of any errors or omissions.

Members search by surname: B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z


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written by Peter Kelly


The extraordinary couple Keith and Ruth Adams were respected and popular figures in the Squadron from the 1970s onwards.  Affectionately known as the “Colonel,” Keith was an engineer with a career as an officer in the British Army serving in Western Europe in WWII, followed by posts in Bermuda and Cypress.  Ruth, occasionally referred to as the “General”, was a WAF pilot during WWII, flying various aircraft (including Spitfires) in various states of airworthiness.  She later accepted the position of meteorologist at the RAF Bermuda Base where she met and sailed with Keith.  Keith and Ruth migrated from the UK to SA with their young family in the 1950s.  Children Michael, Sue, Simon and Tori all inherited their parents’ enthusiasm for yachting.  Keith and Ruth commissioned ‘Wyuna’ (26ft plywood bilge keeler) in 1966 and moored in the Patawalonga near their home, followed by ‘Cockatoo’ (Spencer 30) in 1976 and ‘Peacock’ (Cole 32) in 1978.  As a tenacious racing skipper Keith put his and ‘Peacock’s’ names on most of the Squadron’s inshore and offshore trophies, as well as winning his division, and coming 7th overall, in the 1978 Sydney Hobart Race.  Keith was a foundation member of the CYCSA, and although ‘Peacock’ was one of the first vessels moved into the new marina facility, Keith and Ruth remained loyal and loved members of the Squadron community until their deaths: Keith (2004) and Ruth (2014).


written by Jeanne Harrison


As a child, Barry keenly watched sailing activities from Somerton beach, near to his home.  He joined the Glenelg Sailing Club in 1953 and has maintained continuous membership, although the club is now the Adelaide Sailing Club.  He skippered and crewed various Sharpies and Moths, and also won the Holdfast Trainer Championship, plus the Yvonne 20 Club and State Titles.  He built an Arrow Cat and achieved third in the 1976 Nationals.  In 1979 he joined the Squadron so that he could enjoy his newly built Offshore Roberts 38ft ketch, ‘Audacious II’, having completed all of the fit-out and finishing in the backyard of the Allison home at Henley South.  Opening Days were always memorable events, but also cruises to Port Vincent and Kangaroo Island.  Barry served on the Cruising Committee from 1991-98, as Chairman from 1994-96.  Currently he serves on the Foundation committee; writes for the Squadron Quarterly; and is on the Historical Committee.  For over 31 years, Barry’s business management experience was centred on the automotive industry, and included several overseas study trips.  Both of his sons, Gregory and Peter, and his grandson Luke, are active sailors.  The Adelaide Sailing Club presented the Allison family with a unique award being the first club members who have won club championships over three generations.  In 2007 Barry met and married Carmen.  Together they have maintained their active participation in the life of the Squadron.


written by Jan Perry


In 1933 Ron Angas of Collinsville, Angaston, and his spouse Monica, commissioned Clausens boat builders of Port Adelaide to build a yacht, to be named ‘Pavana’.  Ron’s father, C H Angas, had been a Squadron member and owner of the yacht ‘Valeria’ when Ron was very young.  Ron had crewed in a race to Kangaroo Island in Angove’s ‘Stormy Petrel’ in 1931.  He was a champion polo player and enjoyed motor sport with the Sporting Car Club’s Hillclimb course being built on his property at Collinsville.  His yacht was for cruising and racing.  Soon after launching, on January 27, 1934, ‘Pavana’ entered the Foundation Day Kangaroo Island race and, from then on, Ron sailed regularly, mostly in the long races where he was successful.  In 1935 Mrs Ron Angas (Monica) was described in the press as being “well known in the yachting world”.  After WW2, Ron sailed his boat again in the Kangaroo Island races and the Kintore and Orontes Cups, also winning an “A class” Squadron race.  He sailed ‘Pavana’ until 1947 and sold the boat to George Mayne, a Port Lincoln yachtsman, in 1950.