The "wonderful and interesting life" of Kenneth Dryland OAM, who once served as a hairdresser to the Queen Mother, will be remembered at a funeral service in Orange this week, following the death of the 87-year-old on Monday.
Mr Dryland died at the home he shared with long-term partner Duncan Stuart after two weeks of palliative care.
An Orange resident for more than 20 years, he made his mark on the arts and culture scene in the city, having served as president of the Friends of the Orange Regional Gallery, chairman of the National Trust in Orange and vice-president of the FOOD Week committee under four different presidents.
People just warmed to him. Even though he was quite reserved, he always was the perfect gentleman in every sense of the wordDuncan Stuart
Mr Stuart said all those who met him, including all those who worked alongside him, loved him.
"He had an incredible effect on people," he said.
"People just warmed to him. Even though he was quite reserved, he always was the perfect gentleman in every sense of the word."
Mr Stuart said he had received messages of condolence from those he'd worked with, many expressing their joy at having had the opportunity.
"When Kenneth was on a committee he could ask people to do things and they would do it even when they didn't want to," he said.
"He had a way of making people feel at ease. It was a 'winning' personality."
Mr Dryland spent much of his adult life in Sydney, having moved there from Auckland as a young man in the 50s.
A trained hairdresser, he managed a salon in George Street before setting sail for London in the 60s where he worked at the prestigious salon Gordon of Mayfair.
During his time in England, Mr Dryland was appointed as hairdresser to the Queen Mother. A post he held before returning to Australia in 1965.
His notable career achievements include touring with Dame Joan Sutherland, forming a relationship with the star which saw her travel to Orange in later life to stay with the pair.
Mr Dryland also helped establish the Festival of Mosman in 1981 and was awarded an Order of Australian Medal for his services to the community in 2013.
A funeral will be held at St Barnabas Anglican Church at 2pm on Saturday.
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