In Loving Memory of


Donald Philip Noels - 31 December 1938 - 23 May 2023

Dear Friends and Family 

Please find here a space to leave messages of condolence for Don / Uncle Ronnie / Oupa

You should be able to leave this as a text/photo/ audio or video message.


A post mortem has revealed that Don had Pancreatic Cancer.  The symptom of stomach pain was there, but he was only really complaining of this over the past few months, and it wasn’t detected.


The Funeral will be held at Lodge Hill Crematorium on Friday 7th July 2023 at 2.30pm.

Weoley Park Rd, Birmingham B29 5AA

The wake will be at Handsworth Golf Club where he was a member and regular player, from 3pm.

11 Sunningdale Cl, Birmingham B20 1NP – 0121 554 3387


He was 84 and lived a great and full life, and to all of you we are grateful for your part in that.  He loved his friends and family.

Jacqui and I, and Jacqui’s daughters visited his body on Thursday 25th May, and it did make us feel at peace with his passing.  He even looked like he was smiling.  

He was much loved and respected and we know that he will be missed.

We are hopeful that if you wish to share any photos or videos of Don you would like to, you are also able to do this. 

Sharing your thoughts, memories and pictures/videos will be appreciated.

It is a deeply sad loss for us all, and we hope that you can take comfort in leaving your tribute and seeing how others also remember him.

If you have any queries, Jacqui and Lesley can be reached via email |


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Lesley will also add your message and any photos if you can’t do it.

Book Owner: Lesley Noels
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So sorry to hear the news of Don’s passing, condolences to Lesley, Jacqui, Margaret and the whole family. I have a very clear memory of a great day I spent with Don when I took him to watch Arsenal at The Emirates. He was very excited to see a live game so we met up early to have ham egg n chips at a local cafe. We watched Arsenal beat Sunderland and I remember Don picking out a particular centre midfielder called Alex Song as the best player. I agreed with him as we cheered along to all the various chants being sung in the Clock end. The tube back was incredibly packed so I was worried he wouldn’t be able to make it on but he snuck in to a tiny gap and we made it! Fond memories of a really lovely guy …

Nicki von Arx

Don and Margaret used to stay in my cottage each time they came to SA. I grew very fond of the two of them. It came as a real shock to hear of his passing as he had emailed me planning another trip. His wonderful smile and caring nature will remain a key memory for me. I will miss him coming to stay as over the years we got introduced to the family and chatted for hours about life. My thoughts are with you Margaret and the rest of the family as you bid farewell today to a special man. x …

Marcus Solomon

                            CONDOLENCES TO DON’S FAMILY Dearest Margaret, Jacqui and all members of Don’s family, deepest sympathies from me and my family, and all members of the Children’s Movement and the Children’s Resource Centre.  We join you in mourning Don’s passing but also in celebrating his life. I first met Don in 1957 at Trafalgar High School in Cape Town, that is, 66 years ago.  He was in his second Matric year and I in my first. We never really got to know each well at the time. In 1964 I went to prison, later he left for England. We made contact again through our political work and when I went to London in 1990, Neville Alexander asked Don if he could help me with accommodation while there. As was his way of doing things, he said “no problem”. My eldest daughter and I stayed at his flat in Morning side Crescent for about a week and ever since then, we were in regular contact. After 1994 when he and Margaret began their regular visits to SA, they became very good friends and supporters of the Children’s Movement.  In fact, they, with their children, set up a little fund for …

Shanaaz Viljoen

I’m Shanaaz Viljoen of Children’s Resource Centre based in Cape Town , of which Marcus Solomon your Dad’s comrade is a Founder member.    On behalf of the organisation’s national 22 staff and 3500 child members who are all friends as well as beneficiaries of Don and Magareth’s love and generosity which they extended to us in kind and cash over many, many years .    We wish to extend our sympathy and condolence to his family. Don has visited us every year round about February , spend time with us due to his love and interest for the work we did,  to wich we looked forward. .   We are saddened that we will not see him again and wish Magareth well and the rest of the family, May the Almighty strengthen you with contentment in your hearts for your loss of a kind , jolly and awesome guy.    I can clearly recall our last conversation , however he has been called to a much greater rank , not as a activist or comrade. We trust that he is flying high and that his beautiful soul are resting in peace .    I could not edit the …

Zubeida Desai

Don   It is hard to believe that you are gone. I was planning  –  in my head – where I could take you and Margaret for our next dinner date in February 2024 – the date of your arrival,  the 7th of February, is at the back of my 2023 diary.  In Salt River, where you were born, you were seen as the ‘invincible one’ for outliving all your siblings, despite being the eldest. I got to really know you – warts and all – in the year I spent in London doing my Master’s in  Applied Linguistics at  the Institute of Education. Ons het baie baklei daardie jaar oor dit en dat, maar het nie te lank kwaad gebly nie  Given that we often spoke in Afrikaans when I visited you and Margaret, I had to write something in Afrikaans!   Our friendship was not just an individual one  but was rooted in the role my extended family played in your life.  Durham Avenue in Salt River was where you, my uncle, Abdulla Desai and his cousins, Ismail and Ahmed Kasker, got up to all kinds of mischief as ‘jong laaities’. You were particularly fond of Ebrahim Desai, Abdulla’s older brother.  And after the previous generation of Desai’s passed on, you kept the Desai connection going by visiting the family home in Kingsley Road for our famous Saturday lunches, …

Kim and Oscar Noels

It is with deepest sympathy that we say goodbye to Uncle Ronny. He has been a Pillar and corner stone of the Noels family, he has shown what it is to overcome adversity, to lead with a caring and generous heart and will deeply missed. No matter the hardship we faced he would always have a book recommendation and words of wisdom that would carry us. His contagious laugh and sense of humour will always be remembered and can be heard from the pictures throughout our home. …

Salim Vally

Hamba Kahle, Comrade Don Noels. Saddened by the sudden passing of Don but overwhelmed by a flood of fond memories over three decades. I first met Don in the heady days of the mid 80s when his flat in Mornington Crescent was a hive of activity for young activists from South Africa and older exiles in the UK and Europe. I was given Don and Margaret’s address by Neville Alexander while on a tour to the UK for our union CCAWUSA. My enduring and endearing memory of this first visit was of Don and Margaret stretched out on the carpeted floor stuffing envelopes with copies of Azania Frontline and Azania Worker while peppering me with questions about the situation in South Africa. We were joined later in earnest conversation by Rose Phahle and Dr Vukile Ndingi. I was also a member of a Johannesburg based left youth organisation, Action Youth, allied to other organisations around the country including the Cape Action League and Students of Young Azania. Tammy Braam, a member of the latter two organisations was living in London on an extended stay and a frequent visitor to the flat. Margaret, Tammy, Don and I spent many hours …

Hany, Sam, Gabriel and Elspeth (Wolfe)

We were very sorry to hear of Dons sad passing and we offer our heartfelt wishes to his family in particular at this time. Although not all of us had met Don many times, he was clearly an very interesting, warm and generous man who had a life well-lived-and had also clearly tried hard to make a difference within it.  We are very sure that he will be greatly missed by those whose lives he touched. May his soul rest in peace.     …

Marie Braam

I will always remember Don with love and appreciation: for warm enjoyable visits to my home in Bellville, Cape Town; for kindness in giving Vincent and myself the use of his and Margaret’s home when we visited England; for sacrificial caring of my family in the UK; for his genuine, continued friendship over many years; for precious memories of all he meant to us, in so many ways. Heartfelt sympathy to Margaret, Jacqui, Lesley and to the extended family. In loving memory of a beloved friend. …

Godfrey & Ntobsie

It was with great sadness that we heard of the passing of Don who was also affectionately known as “Ronnie”.He was loyal comrade and brother. He was moreover committed socialist  and was willing to support all progressive  causes. When all is said He was a man of deep compassion and would never sacrifice his principles on the alter of political expediency.He was the epitome of what a socialist should.Don was one of a rare breed. He shall be sorely missed by all who knew him.         …