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City Consorts celebrate International Women’s Day 2018...

Social historian, Carol Harris, outlines the attitudes of the period, and traces some of the horrendous events with which the suffragettes were involved... 


Determined to celebrate International Women’s Day this year, the Mistress led a group of other Livery Master Consorts in organising a one-off event on   March 8th 2018. Over 150 Masters, Prime Wardens , Consorts  and their guests assembled, both to learn more about the suffragettes  - and to raise funds for the Lord Mayor’s Appeal. Although 2018 is the centenary of the first stage of suffrage for women in Britain – it is still definitely a moment worth celebrating.

Carol Harris, an eminent social historian, spoke  about the changing role of women in the early craft guilds;  the Livery companies that they became, and the history of women’s suffrage - the right to vote - across the globe. 

Carol Harris - Social Historian

Carol’s excellent visual presentation of suffragette memorabilia was supported by explanations of how various groups of women first marched through the streets, then - frustrated by lack of action - chose civil unrest to raise awareness of their cause. The viciousness of the government and legal retribution against these women would justifiably cause a Human Rights complaint today.

Because one of the most well-known suffragettes, Emmeline Pankhurst, was imprisoned at Mansion House, it was intended as our venue.  Alas, an unscheduled State visit by of all people,  a Saudi Prince, required use of the Lord Mayor’s home on this auspicious date;  but at short notice Saddlers’ Hall kindly agreed to host the event.  For me it was the first visit to this elegant hall, with its small museum of saddlery and interesting art collection.

I am  delighted to confirm that, between ticket sales, the raffle, donations for ribbons and sales of playing cards, our generous members and guests raised around £2,500 for the Lord Mayor’s Appeal , making the day a great success all round.

Some of the International Women's Day supporters...

 And the photographer....!  

Master David Johnson... photographer







Mary Johnson, Mistress