Last Saturday, 8 March 2014, was International Women's Day and I was booked to photograph an event at Waltham Forest Town Hall, hosted by Waltham Forest Women's Network. My personal thanks go to Karen Flint, one of the lead organisers, for booking me.
To kick off the proceedings, there was a walk, "Walthamstow's Wonderful Women Walk", organised by the MP for Walthamstow, Stella Creasy. The walk started on Cedars Avenue which was where Sylvia, Christine and Emmeline Pankhurst gathered with their supporters to march for equal voting rights for women back in 1910. When the modern day version of the march arrived at Waltham Forest Town Hall, the ladies sang the suffragette song "March of the Women", led by Natural Voice choir.
During the day around 1,000 visitors attended to experience food, arts and crafts, advice and guidance from more than 40 stands. On the main stage there were keynote speakers such as Stella Creasy, Clare Coghill, Muzvare-Princess Betty Makoni, and Charis Jaid. There was also lots of dancing, singing and a fabulous fashion show to round off the event.
The sun shone brightly on the day in more ways than one, and it feels appropriate to conclude with a quote from one of the organisers of the 1910 suffragette march.
"Men make the moral code and they expect women to accept it. They have decided that it is entirely right and proper for men to fight for their liberties and their rights, but that it is not right and proper for women to fight for theirs" Emmeline Pankhurst
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