Linlithgow woman honoured for half a century in Girlguiding
A Girlguiding Scotland volunteer originally from Linlithgow has been recognised in The
Queen’s Birthday Honours for her work supporting girls and young women over more than
Sally McMath will be awarded the Order of the British Empire by Her Majesty the Queen in
honour of her inspirational efforts.
Sally whose parents Mel and Kirsty Grey were well known locally was first became involved in guiding when she joined her local Brownie unit in Linlithgow
at just 8 years old.
Although Sally describes herself as a ‘reluctant Brownie’ at first, the
opportunity to make friends and discover new experiences, from camping to star-gazing
soon won her over and she went onto become a Guide, a ranger and then an adult
Sally has held various roles throughout her time with Girlguiding both at a local and
national level, from leading girls in the 2 nd Linlithgow Guide unit to serving as a District
Commissioner in Livingston and County Commissioner in West Lothian.
Sally went onto become Scottish Chief Commissioner, Girlguiding Scotland’s lead
volunteer, in 1997, overseeing the work of Girlguiding Scotland across the country and
supporting the charity’s 50,000 young members and network of 11,500 volunteers. In this
role Sally visited girls and volunteers throughout the country and following that led the Big
G fundraising appeal, bringing in more than £1 million for refurbishment and development
of Girlguiding Scotland’s outdoor and training centre Netherurd.
Looking over her time as a Girlguiding Scotland member, Sally says her biggest highlight
has been supporting girls and other volunteers to take on new challenges, gain new skills
and grow in confidence.
She said: “I was totally overwhelmed to receive this OBE. I feel extremely proud and lucky
to have been a part of Girlguiding Scotland for several decades. Since I joined as a
Brownie, Girlguiding has given me so many opportunities to make amazing friends and life-
long memories, to challenge myself and develop my skills and confidence.
I feel really honoured that, as a volunteer, I’ve had the opportunity to give back by
supporting girls and other volunteers to join in the fun and adventure and be all they can
“Girlguiding opens up so many fantastic opportunities for girls to grow in confidence and
become a powerful force for good in their communities. Over time the badges and
uniforms have changed but what’s stayed constant is the commitment to giving girls a
space where they can be themselves, discover just how much they’re capable of and feel
proud of their achievements.
I would like to dedicate this award to all of the girls and volunteers I have had the
pleasure of knowing and working alongside over the last 50 years.”
Today Sally continues to play an active role in Girlguiding and is County President for
Girlguiding West Lothian. Outside of Girlguiding, Sally, who now lives in Currie, Edinburgh,
is a physiotherapist, an active member of two choirs