Sylvia Pannell (nee Wigley)

Sadly Sylvia passed away on 11th August 2016 after a long illness. My sincere condolences go out to Tony, their family, friends and former colleagues. She was the wife of Tony Pannell a long-serving manager with BUA and then BCAL.

However Sylvia also had her own career within the airline and its predecessors. Sylvia operated as a ‘Number One’ and was known affectionately back in the day as ‘Wiggles’. She joined Hunting Clan in 1956; later moving to Gatwick after they merged with Airwork to become British United Airways. Sylvia operated as a ‘Number One’.

Sylvia met Tony when both were involved in a project to enhance catering loading arrangements aboard the Britannia and Viscount fleets - a project initiated by John Byrne, the then General Traffic Manager. Sylvia and Tony became engaged and were married in 1962.

Tony went on to take a number of overseas country manager postings - notably in West Africa - and Sylvia was very much part of the BCAL team working alongside him for BCAL in Ghana, Liberia and Zambia. Together, they made an important mark for the airline in those places.

Visiting colleagues from Gatwick HQ will also remember her as a very helpful and welcoming hostess, generous with hospitality and useful local knowledge. Their daughter, Tania, went on to fly as cabin crew for BCAL and continued for a further 14 years with BA after the merger. Sylvia was clearly at the heart of a true BUA/BCAL/BA family which deserves recognition in the history of modern British civil aviation. Sylvia was a credit to the airline recalls Tony Cocklin

Sylvia's service was held on 24th August 2016 at  Exeter Crematorium

Sylvia Remembered

From Valerie Hardiman (now Poole)
So very sorry to hear of the passing of Sylvia, many happy memories flying with her 1958 to 1960 with British and Commonwealth and Hunting-Clan

If you would like to leave a message in remembrance please drop me a line anytime

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British Caledonian - A Tribute