Much-loved Banchory pianist honoured by the Rotary Club of Banchory-Ternan

A much-loved figure in Banchory’s Scottish music scene has been honoured by the Rotary Club of Banchory-Ternan.

Wednesday, 16th September 2020, 7:00 am
The Walter Smith Rosebowl, was presented to Mrs Margaret Smith by the immediate past president of the club, Bob Watt.

Margaret Smith was recognised for her immense contribution over many years to the club, Banchory Strathspey and Reel Society and many other groups in the town who invariably call on her as pianist when musical accompaniment is required.

The Walter Smith Rosebowl, presented by the widow of Walter Smith, a former prominent member of the club and awarded every year to someone who has made an outstanding contribution to the Banchory community, was presented to Margaret by the club’s immediate past-president, Bob Watt, at a ceremony at the Falls of Feugh Restaurant on Friday.

Unfortunately, Covid-19 restrictions prevented a more public presentation from taking place.

Three past presidents of the club, Leonard McIntosh, Ian Paterson and Stewart Wilson, who put Mrs Smith’s name forward for the award, were present along with Mrs Smith’s daughter, Mrs Jane Davidson.

“Margaret is a most popular, likeable and valuable person both within our club and most importantly within the Banchory community,” the citation supporting Mrs Smith’s nomination states.

“I have a long association with Banchory Rotary Club going back 30 or 40 years and don’t think I’ve missed a year playing at the club’s annual Christmas party and the Burns Supper,” said a delighted Mrs Smith.

“I’ve always felt very much home at Rotary, where my late husband was a member for many years, and felt very honoured when I got the ‘phone call asking me if I would accept the award.”

If any organisations In Banchory such as Rotary require a pianist, it is inevitably Margaret they call on and she never fails to oblige, particularly when it comes to charitable events.

In addition, she entertains at care homes in the town every week and fills in as church organist when required.

Mrs Smith has already been made an honorary member of the Rotary club for her dedicated service to the club over many years and shared in Rotary’s highest honour, the Paul Harris Award, which was awarded to her late husband, Bill, who along with Margaret, was instrumental in reviving the Strathspey and Fiddle Club in the 1980s.

Mr Smith was a talented fiddler and the pair spent many hours stimulating and teaching young and old in the community to play and enjoy Scottish fiddle music.

Margaret continued as the society’s pianist following Bill’s death and has played a huge part in the society’s revival to its present leading role in the Banchory community and the wider Scottish music scene.