We are incredibly saddened to hear about the passing of Prof. Noel Lloyd, and we wanted to take this time to celebrate what he achieved at Fair Trade Wales.
Noel joined Fair Trade Wales as Chair in 2011, shortly after stepping down as Pro-Vice Chancellor at Aberystwyth University. Noel was a dedicated Chairman of Fair Trade Wales who successfully steered the organisation through significant challenges and change. His keen intelligence, personal warmth and understated sense of humour were crucial to his maintaining the effectiveness of the board, as was his evident commitment to making the world a fairer place. As Chairman he was completely committed to supporting the staff and volunteers at Fair Trade Wales as well as activists across the country.
He was quietly effective, allowing everyone their view and insistent on accountable action. He always gave the work his best, despite the many other demands on his time. He believed in Fair Trade and gave the movement generously of his time and talent.
Elen Jones, former National Coordinator at Fair Trade Wales, said,
‘It was a privilege to work with Noel, as Chair of Fair Trade Wales. He was a man of dignity and patience, and always knew the right things to say and do. He was also a great mentor to the team and his legacy will live on in our work.’
We believe that Noel Lloyd saw that Fair Trade Wales was the catalyst for the Fair Trade movement in Wales, something that his Chapel, town and university got on board with. One memorable event was at a mid-Wales Fair Trade celebration in the Morlan centre, Aberystywth in 2016. Supporters from the community came together with Fair trade stalls, including the University catering department, the Oxfam shop, Traidcraft representatives and local businesses. We heard talks from Ffion Storer-Jones, who had recently been on a 6-week trip in Africa visiting Fairtrade producers, and Subindu Garkhel, a cotton expert from the Fairtrade Foundation. Noel attended the whole event with his family and gladly presented a prize hamper to its winner. He was happy to be supportive of activity in his community as well as the larger work that Fair Trade Wales does.
Noel encouraged connections between fair trade producers and consumers, and himself met Fairtrade producers during Fairtrade Fortnight visits.
Nimrod Wambette, a coffee farmer from Uganda who has visited Wales many times said,
“Sad to hear of the passing of Noel, former Chair of Fair Trade Wales. I was privileged to have met him in Aberystwyth when I came over for Fairtrade fortnight campaigns 2016. Noel was jolly and passionate about Fairtrade. He contributed to the growth of the deep compassion the Welsh people have for disadvantaged small producers of the world. My deep condolences to his family and the Fairtrade fraternity in the whole of Wales. May his soul Rest In Peace.”
Noel’s faith is based on ideas that all humans are equal, and loved. This is the basis of our work at Fair Trade Wales, that all people, no matter who they are or where they are born, deserve to be treated fairly and with dignity. Noel embodied these values. Whilst his work made him a significant person in Wales, he was never pompous or haughty, and knew and recognised that everyone who supports Fair Trade is making a difference, that every purchase switched is bringing the globe closer to being equal. We want to remember and celebrate Noel Lloyd’s life. He will be deeply missed.