2018 marks 100 years since Parliament passed a law which allowed some women, and all men, to vote for the first time. To celebrate this important milestone, we are running a series of free Thursday morning talks throughout 2018.
These talks begin and end in Westminster Hall and include a short walk which includes St Stephen's Hall and Central Lobby, and some steps to view the 'New Dawn' artwork.
New Dawn Talks
Thursdays 10.30am to 11am when Parliament is sitting - starting 22 February 2018
Join one of our Visitor Assistants on a talk which focuses on 'New Dawn', a contemporary light sculpture by artist Mary Branson. Revealed on 7 June 2016, 150 years to the day since the campaign for women’s votes began, this artwork celebrates all the individuals involved.
Measuring over six metres high, the large scale of 'New Dawn' is intended to represent the size of the suffrage campaign, and the unique hand-blown glass scrolls that make up its dawning sun reflect the many individuals who were involved in the movement.
Thursdays 11.30am to 12noon when Parliament is sitting - starting 22 February 2018
During this talk our Visitor Assistants highlight the militant campaign conducted by members of the Women's Social and Political Union (WSPU - motto 'Deeds not words') and the Women's Freedom League (WFL), and how their actions impacted Parliament.
In 1908 the WSPU urged the public to join them in an attempted 'rush' on Parliament. About 60,000 people gathered but the police cordon held fast. In the same year, three WFL members unfurled a banner from the Ladies' Gallery into the Commons Chamber.
How can I join one of the talks?
These free talks start in Westminster Hall. Places are limited and offered on a first come, first served basis. There is no advance booking.
Although the talks do not include access to the Commons Chamber or the Lords Chamber, visitors are welcome to watch debates and committees.
Image: ‘This is the House… And this is the Minister…’ © Palace of Westminster