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Hot on the heels of the formal BEM presentation to Margaret Mather in the drawing room, it was through to the Inveraray Castle gun room for another special occasion.
After 33 years’ loyal service to the Argyll family, Margaret is retiring from Argyll Estates.
As she received warm words and a number of special presentations to mark the occasion, the Duke of Argyll said: ‘Margaret has been a pillar of the estate and an incredibly important part of this family for the past 33 years.
‘While I am gutted she’s retiring, I am honoured to be part of the occasion this evening to mark her years of invaluable work for the estate.
‘Margaret deserves a great deal of credit and I thank her for her dedication. She will be missed.’
He added: ‘And I should add that Margaret has seen off two dukes and three factors during her time here.’
Margaret reflected on her decades at the estate. ‘When I started in 1984 it was all carbon paper and typewriters. With all the modern technology it’s hard not to look back fondly on these days.
‘No way did I think I would end my career here, but over the years there have been plenty of laughs, and that has helped through stressful days.’
She ended with a joke: ‘The helpline is now open.’
Margaret with His Grace the Duke of Argyll and flowers presented by the Argyll family children on her retirement. 06_a44Margaretbem13
A stunning hand-engraved bowl by Giles Lawson Johnston, presented by the duke and duchess to Margaret to mark 33 years of service. 06_a44Margaretbem14