MBE joy for community stalwart Margaret who has taught thousands of Dundee kids music and dance

Margaret Mather said the MBE came as a “complete and utter shock”.

Dundee woman Margaret Mather has been awarded the MBE for services to Dundee Junior Showtime and wider community activities.

Born in the Overgate and brought up in city orphanages, Margaret, 80, established Dundee Junior Showtime in 1970.

Down the decades, she has taught thousands of local kids to sing, dance and enjoy musical theatre.

She abandoned a career as a professional singer — which had already taken her to the US, Russia and Europe — to bring up her children.

That gave her the opportunity to start Dundee Junior Showtime at the YMCA.

As well as being a busy mum and organising shows and classes for the Showtime kids, she also found time to hold down a job at Timex.

Margaret has also been involved in numerous organisations that have brightened many lives, such as the Dundee Freevoice Singers for older folk who entertain in nursing homes and sheltered housing complexes.

Margaret Mather of Dundee Junior Showtime.

She was named Citizen of the Year in 1996 and has also been involved in supporting the Armed Forces charity, SAFFA.

In connection with her SAFFA work, she was invited to sing at the Dundee Festival of Remembrance in 2013.

That was a particularly poignant occasion for Margaret, whose half-brother Duncan McGregor was killed aged just 19 while serving with the Royal Scots during the Second World War.

The MBE came as a “complete and utter shock” to Margaret.

“I couldn’t believe it, because you just go through your life doing the things you do and not looking for awards,” she said. “I’ve never looked at any of the things I’ve done as being charity — it’s just helping others.

“When I started Dundee Junior Showtime there were always new bairns coming along, so I just kept it going.

“This MBE is for them too, for all the hard work they put in through the years.”

Margaret’s partner, former Lord Provost John Letford, said: “This is such a worthy honour.

“Margaret always kept the door open for any child and has done so for 50 years.”