Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Women's Exhibition and Sale of Work

In the lead up to 2018, the 100th anniversary of when some (though not all) women got the vote, join us for events celebrating suffragettes and Edith New.

Swindon Suffragette in collaboration with Swindon Heritage will be holding a Women's Exhibition and Craft Sale at Christ Church Community Rooms on November 12, 1-4. The inspiration for this event is the Women's Exhibition of 1909 held at the Prince's Skating Rink, Knightsbridge in 1909.

During the lead up to the event I will be publishing extracts from the suffragette newspaper Votes for Women following preparations as they developed.

The Women's Exhibition

The arrangements for the great exhibition to be held in the Prince’s Skating Rink by the Women’s Social and Political Union from May 13 to May 26 are already in active progress. The response to the appeal of Mrs Pethick Lawrence is bearing splendid fruit, and a very large number of friends of the Union have already come forward and offered to take their part towards making the exhibition a great success.

In the first place, the decoration and general arrangement of the colour scheme has been placed in the hands of Miss Sylvia Pankhurst, who will carry out the design throughout the whole of the building, and those who have seen and appreciated Miss Pankhurst’s work will know that a delightful effect is sure to be produced.

With regard to the exhibits, a number of ideas have already been forwarded to headquarters, and some of these are being undertaken, and others are being considered. It is too early yet to give any details, but from time to time we shall be able to describe the arrangements which are being made.
As announced last week, the whole of the entertainment programme will be provided by theActreses’ Franchise League. Arrangements are being made to set aside a special part of the exhibition for this purpose, and this will undoubtedly prove one of the most attractive and interesting features. It is quite impossible for the Union to express in words how much it owes to the generous men and women who are so kindly offering their services for the purpose.

We have also made good progress with the allotment of stalls to the local unions and to private individuals. The Kensington Women’s Social and Political Union have generously offered to take charge of two stalls, which will be of different characters. One will be a general stall and the other a millinery stall. We shall hope to be able to announce in a later issue more particulars as to these. The Streatham WSPU have also decided to take one stall, and they are making arrangements to devote it almost entirely to children’s clothing. Several other local unions are considering the possibility of taking one whole stall or of taking part of a stall together with other local unions; their committees are meeting in the course of the next week or two, and definite announcements will then be forthcoming. The various districts represented by the different campaigns which are being undertaken by the organisers of the NWSPU are also making themselves responsible for one or more stalls. Bristol and Bath are going to provide one stall, and Torquay, Plymouth, and Paignton are going to provide another stall. Lancashire will be represented by a stall, and Yorkshire by another; for the Yorkshire stall special preparations are being made for local commodities; among others there will be a division for Yorkshire foods, such as Yorkshire parkin and home-made pickles, etc. Birmingham has undertaken to supply one stall, and Scotland will also be represented.

We are glad to be able to announce that Mrs Garrett Anderson, MD, Mayor of Aldeburgh, has promised to be responsible for one stall. The Writers’ League, who President is Miss Elizabeth Robins, have promised another – a bookstall, which will attract great interest. Our friends the YHB, have undertaken to be responsible for one stall. A sweet stall is promised by Miss Flora Macdonald and Miss M Thompson, with whom will be associated Miss Leggatt. This promises to be very popular. Lady Sybil Smith has kindly undertaken to provide a stall where a speciality is to be made of lamp and candle shades and other fancy articles. Mrs Thomas is providing one stall. The Misses Beck and Mrs Marshall and others are providing a novelty in the way of a farm produce stall; their attendants will all be dressed in country costume, and considerable interest will attach to the articles of sale.

Mrs Murrell and Miss C Turle are offering to supply one-quarter of a stall each. We shall be glad to hear of one or two other ladies who would be willing to complete this. Mrs East of Chiswick, is providing a lucky tub. Mrs Ward Higgs, Mrs Willock, and Mrs Lucksmoore are each sending goods to the value of £15; Miss Solomon goods to the value of £10; Mrs Fergusson and Mrs Edwards goods to the value of £5. A number of other friends are expecting to be able to give us definite promises in the course of the next day or two, so that we hope by our next issue to be able to give further particulars. We shall be glad to hear from those of our friends who are working for any of the stalls particulars which may be interesting, so that, as far as possible, we may keep our readers informed of our progress week by week.

Women's Exhibition 1909

Women's Exhibition 1909

Sylvia Pankhurst

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