Today marks 100 years since a long battle was won and women finally had the right to vote in the UK! It's fantastic to see such a positive celebration of this landmark moment in the battle for equality and I've enjoyed reading about some of the lesser known individuals who played a part in enabling me and millions of other women to vote. It's also left me feeling very humbled at the sacrifices so many women made to enable me to enjoy the freedoms I do today.
A story that I read this morning was about Rosa May Billinghurst. She was branded the “cripple suffragette” and was a regular at marches and demonstrations, getting around on her adapted tricycle. She once chained herself to Buckingham Palace and faced gross brutality from the police. Through all of this, she endured and kept fighting. She is the sort of fierce campaigner that I aspire to be.
However, whilst reading her story it struck me that I had never heard of her before. It made me wonder how many of these women were only being talked about and celebrated now- 100 years later.
I have a young niece and I want her to be inspired by women of the past and present today and every day. I want her to grow up knowing that she is capable of achieving greatness, just as many other women have done so before her and will continue to do so in the future.
I know that we are currently surrounded, particularly in the charity sector, by women doing incredible work to change the world for the better. So, to add to the discourse about the strong women of the suffragette movement I wanted to start a conversation here that recognises and celebrates other incredible woman from the past and present that motivate and inspire you.