A “WEE lassie from Oakley” who helped save Dunfermline Athletic is in the Queen’s New Years Honours List for services to football and the community.

Marvyn Stewart, 76, said she was “bloody gobsmacked” when she found out Her Majesty had awarded her the British Empire Medal (BEM) – and she’s hoping they’ll be able to have a chat at the royal garden party at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in the summer.

“What will we talk about? Boris Johnson!” she laughed. “No, if I get the chance I’ll just ask how her family is.

“Maybe I can present her with a Pars shirt or a signed ball, she can let the bairns run round the palace with it!”

She added: “I think it’s amazing, I’m bloody gobsmacked, I’m just a wee lassie from Oakley!

“I’ve known for about two weeks but they asked me not to say anything.

“My daughters (Julie and Emma) congratulated me for doing just that as normally I can’t keep a secret!”

However, she admitted she thought it was a wind-up when first told about the award.

Marvyn, who now stays in Cairneyhill, smiled: “A woman from the cabinet office phoned and said, ‘It’s about the BEM you’ve been nominated for’.

“I nearly fell off my chair and said, ‘Did I get one like?’ and she said, ‘Yes’.

“I said, ‘Oh right’. I couldn’t think what to say. I did ask if it was a hoax but she assured me it wasn’t.

“I don’t even know who nominated me, I’m not going to ask, but my girls are over the moon.

“My husband, George, is in a care home with dementia but he still knows what we’re saying and he was delighted too.”

Marvyn, who was named the 2018 Scottish Football Supporter of the Year for her charitable efforts, was nominated for the honours list for her lifelong dedication to the Pars which has “seen her make a significant contribution to the local community and sport in Fife”.

She saw the team in its finest hours when Dunfermline won the Scottish Cup in 1961 and 1968 and was one of the many fans who rallied round when the club was in its greatest need, during the financial troubles and administration of 2013.

Through the Dunfermline Athletic Supporters Club Shop and Tea Room, affectionately known as Marv’s Emporium, the pensioner and her band of volunteers have raised more than £57,000 by selling football tops and other pieces of memorabilia donated by fans.

She said: “It’s a lot of money for a wee operation like ours.

“When the club was going into administration I was just sitting there and thought I could so something to help.

“We started in a tiny wee office with four retro shirts my pal gave me from her attic. We were in beside the club shop and then we outgrew that and it got bigger and bigger.

“I never did think we would lose the club, I always had faith, and the board have always been brilliant with me. They just let me get on with it and always helped where they could.”

Thanks to the efforts of fans like Marvyn, the club was saved but she’s kept up the fundraising efforts.

Over the years, she’s also collected funds to help the homeless and to brighten up the lounge at Henderson House care home, where George stays, with a lick of paint, a new sofa, TV and DVD player.

She explained: “It’s my respite! I go from Cairneyhill to the home in Dalgety Bay every day to see George, my daughters go too, and let him know we’re still there for him.

“I enjoy helping the club. It’s brilliant we’re now part of the hub at East End Park, we’re helping the community too and we now do lunches on a Friday.”

Marvyn said she had always been a “football fanatic” and recalled: “My grandfather was a football coach where Jock Stein was from, in Burnbank, and they won the Scottish Cup.

“And my dad ran the Comrie Colliery team; they used to sign the players in our house. One of them was Jackie Sinclair, who went on to star for Dunfermline. I would run to get my gran’s messages so I could get along to the game. I remember I was really young at the time and Comrie ran a bus when they played Auchtermuchty.

“Once the players got off, my mum piped up: ‘I’m sure Jimmy Shand stays here’. We traipsed up to his door for an autograph and ended up getting invited in for tea!”

Marvyn now has to decide on her colours for tea with the Queen, with her beloved black and white a possibility?

She laughed: “Wear a Pars shirt? Oh you’ve given me an idea! Or maybe I could wear a Pars kilt? Or maybe no with my figure!”

Pars chairman Ross McArthur commented: “On behalf of everyone at DAFC, I would like to warmly congratulate Marvyn on her award for services to football and the community. Marvyn told me about this a couple of weeks ago but I was sworn to secrecy! I also know a number of her fellow Pars fans nominated her for this prestigious award, which I know makes it even more special for Marvyn.

“Marvyn epitomises what our club is all about and has contributed so much to our cause, over many years, but particularly since the dark days of administration. She always puts others first despite having to deal with her own day-to-day challenges in recent years. I know her husband, George and her two daughters will be very, very proud.”