Anne Mathams

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Anne Muirhead Mathams FEIS (6 May 1913 – 21 February 2011) was a Scottish educationist, innovator and disability rights activist.


The elder of two children born to Robert and Annie Mathams, she had a younger brother, John. Her father died in 1924 as a result of injuries sustained during the First World War. Her grandfather was Walter John Mathams, a Church of Scotland minister who wrote the popular children's hymn, "Jesus Friend Of Little Children".[1]

Teaching career (all Edinburgh)[edit]

  • 1932 - trained at Jersey Ladies College
  • 1936 - headmistress at Stanwell Nursery
  • 1939 - headmistress of St Leonards Nursery
  • 1941 - headmistress of Moray House Nursery
  • 1948 - headmistress of Westerlea School, established by the Scottish Council for the Care of Spastics (now known as Capability Scotland, of which Mathams was a founder member)


  • Member, Educational Institute of Scotland (1936)
  • Founder member, Scottish Council for the Care of Spastics; later known as Capability Scotland (1946)
  • Chair, Nursery School Association (Edinburgh branch)
  • Fellow, Educational Institute of Scotland (1972; life membership granted in 1979)
  • Elsie Inglis Award for Lifetime Achievement (2000)


Miss Mathams retired from teaching in 1978.


She died on 21 February 2011, aged 97, at the Colinton Care Home, Edinburgh, unmarried.

External links[edit]