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Alice Hawkins The Suffragette

Always & always facing toward the Light

Here in Leicester tonight we witness the remarkable and inspiring story of Leicester suffragette Alice Hawkins. The amazing 3D show brought to life with live performances, an incredible choir and a spectacular video projection on the historic Corn Exchange building.

Thousands of people attended tonight at the New Market Square to watch one of the three shows. It was truly a great way to remember Alice and her fellow suffragettes. I’m sure that history was made in our city of Leicester has the Statue of Alice looked down upon us all tonight with tears of joy rolling down her face and knowing that her fight for equality was achieved.

This Event was truly rememberable, one of the best I have covered here in Leicester and we should all be proud of our history and the diversity of our great city of Leicester.

Great work from all involved with this event, it was well organised. with good security, along with great work from Maggie Shutt’s team at the Leicester city council events.

Watch the Video of the event.

Video By Leicester Media online 4K Ver 1:01

Alice Hawkins

Alice Hawkins (née Riley) was born in 1863 in Stafford into a working class family. One of nine children, Alice went to work at the age of 13 and met her future husband, Alfred Hawkins, at a socialist meeting. Alice married Alfred in 1884 and moved to Leicester, where she lived and worked for the rest of her life. Alice raised a family of six while working at the Equity Shoe Factory on Western Road, where she quickly focused on the issues affecting women working in the shoe trade. An active member of the newly formed Independent Labour Party, Alice went to London in February 1907 to join a suffragette protest outside Parliament. Along with 28 other women, Alice was arrested that day and subsequently spent 14 days in Holloway prison. This period of incarceration – the first of five – galvanised Alice’s resolve and she formed the Leicester branch of the Women’s Social and Political Union just a few months after leaving jail. Four years later, in 1911, Alice co-founded the Women’s Independent Boot and Shoe Trade Union. Although her time as a suffragette came to an abrupt end in 1914, when women were asked to cease their militancy, Alice continued to be an active trade unionist and a Labour party member until her death in March 1946, where she was buried at Leicester’s Welford Road Cemetery

Image By Craig Thorpe Photography

Votes for Women!

It’s a hundred years since the Representation of the People Act gave some women and all men the right to vote. During 2018-19, the city is marking the anniversary by remembering the women who played such a key role in the suffragette movement, including Leicester's very own Alice Hawkins.

Alice Hawkins Statue unveiled Febuary 2018

Alice Hawkins Statue

New Market Square, Leicester Market Leicester’s statue of Alice was unveiled in February 2018 a hundred years after the Representation of the People Act gave some women the right to vote.

Leicester is one of seven cities in the Centenary Cities project marking 100 years of Votes for Women funded by the Government Equalities Office with a range of exhibitions, events and the launch of the Alice Hawkins statue last year.

Tonights event was a free, with wristbands issued to allocate the show times, along with discounts for venues.


Event Picture

This major event - celebrating Alice’s story and closely linked to International Women’s Day on March 8th – is not to be missed.

Share Space and Light used 5 projectors to create a projection that covered the entire Corn Exchange building. Each projector will project 30000 lumens of light. 1 lumen = the light of 1 candle. All to help bring the story of Alice Hawkins to life 100 years on!


Pictures taken at the event.

to find out more about Alice Hawkins

This Event produced by Leicester City Council in partnership with Big Difference Company.

This article by Craig Thorpe for Leicester Media Online

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For more Pictures of this event.


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