Margaret Armitage receiving her Distinguished Service Award from BQ's Colleen Ryan


by jgrey on December 8, 2020

When Margaret Armitage moved to the Mackay District from Victoria, it was their loss and our gain.

Margaret dedicated many years to bowls and was recently awarded the prestigious Distinguished Service Award at this year’s Presentation and Presidents At Home Day.

BQ Board Member Colleen Ryan presented the award acknowledging that Margaret was a truly fine example of someone dedicated to the sport of lawn bowls and the development of the skills of those around her.

Margaret joined the Mackay RSL Memorial Bowls Club and held various committee positions. She moved to the North Mackay Bowls Club where she joined the committee and became Senior Vice President, President and Selector, whilst becoming the Umpire Chairperson as an amalgamated position for both Mackay District Ladies Bowling Association and Mackay Men’s District Bowling Association.

Margaret then became a Presenter and Assessor in umpiring in the latter years. It was only Margaret’s 90th birthday that saw her decide to give up her position in this capacity.

As yet, no one has stepped into those shoes to fill the position but Margaret continues to offer support when needed. One of Margaret’s aims was to have umpires at each and every club in the Mackay District and this goal has been achieved.

It was heartening to see how many people attended the presentation. Margaret’s husband George; daughter Michelle and partner Wade; granddaughter Julie and great grand-daughter Rhiannon were there to support her.

Margaret lamented that her daughter Cheryl, who was lost to cancer last year, was unable to be there but her presence in spirit if not in person was acknowledged by Margaret.

Also amongst the distinguished guests present were Lesley Bates, Bowls Australia Regional Bowls Manager Northern Region; Mackay Men’s District Bowls Association President Neil Blackburn; Immediate Past President MMDBA and State Coaching Panel member Felix Purcell; Mayor Greg Williamson from Mackay Regional Council and a full house of bowlers from the Mackay District.

Ever humble, Margaret thanked all for their support of her and for the recognition that was appreciated but not expected.

Contributed by: Heather Brown