Fond tributes paid to woman who devoted life to public service

Margaret Edmondson, when she was in the ATS during the Second World War
Margaret Edmondson, when she was in the ATS during the Second World War
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A DEDICATED worker who devoted herself to public service and was made an MBE by the Queen has died aged 102.

Margaret Edmondson was a lifetime Portsmouth resident who was engaged in work for many local charities.

Having worked in the army for most of her life, after retiring she devoted her life to SSAFA.

Margaret gave 31 years’ devoted service to SSAFA, receiving long-service certificates, honorary life membership and the MBE for her charitable work.

In 2001, Mrs Edmondson was made an MBE at an investiture at Buckingham Palace for her many years’ service to The Soldiers’, Sailors’ and Airmen’s Families Association.

Her nephew Nicholas Allen said: ‘She had a remarkable long life of public service and was working well into her 90s. She was a very devoted and loyal member of SSAFA.’

Mr Allen reflected fondly on memories of Margaret sharing a story from when Margaret, then aged 92, was pulled over by police for speeding on her way to the centre to work for SSAFA.

He said: ‘The amusing family story is that once she got pulled over for speeding.

She was probably 92 at the time, it makes us laugh to think what the police must have thought.’

Prior to her work with SSAFA Margaret saw service in the Auxiliary Territorial Service and later joined the WRAC (Women’s Royal Army Corps), rising to the rank of Major.

Margaret was the daughter of Engineer Commander Percival Allen RN, who fought at the Dardanelles and Jutland in the First World War, and the granddaughter of Alderman Albert Porter who was Mayor of Portsmouth in the 1920s.

On her retirement, she cared for her mother, Alderman Porter’s daughter, living at Castleton Court, Southsea Terrace and then devoted service to SSAFA.

Margaret donated many mementoes of her grandfather’s time as Mayor of Portsmouth to the City Museum.

Margaret died peacefully on June 2 aged 102. Her funeral took place at Kingston Cemetery, on Thursday last week.