Salute to pivotal moment for women’s suffrage in Palmers Green

Enfield’s role in the women’s suffrage movement has been marked by a special ceremony held in Palmers Green on International Women’s Day (8 March).

- Enfield Council honours the fight for equality with a special ceremony
- Plaque to local suffragettes unveiled by Mayor of Enfield
- All Enfield adults urged to register to vote in honour of the suffrage movement

Enfield’s role in the women’s suffrage movement has been marked by a special ceremony held in Palmers Green on International Women’s Day (8 March).

The Mayor of Enfield, Cllr Christine Hamilton, unveiled a commemorative plaque at Palmers Green Triangle dedicated to the fight for equality which led to women getting the first chance to vote, one hundred years ago last month.

Palmers Green Triangle is the spot in June 1914 where a group of suffragettes attempted to hold a meeting to campaign for the right to vote. A crowd of hostile men attempted to break up the meeting and mounted police were called to restore order. The incident gained national press coverage. Four years later, the Representation of the People Act was passed, giving some women the right to vote.

At the ceremony, volunteers, including Enfield Council’s Cabinet Member for Community, Arts & Culture, Cllr Yasemin Brett, re-enacted the famous brawl which put Palmers Green in the Municipal Borough of Southgate on the map for the fight for women’s rights.

Cllr Brett said: “We are incredibly proud of Enfield’s role in the suffrage movement. Palmers Green, Winchmore Hill and Southgate in particular were strong centres for activity. Many leading lights of this struggle – women and men – visited the area to make the case for equal voting rights and to help the movement further. We have come a long way since then.

“One hundred years on and all women can now vote in the UK. Without the grit, determination and full belief in equality of the suffragettes, I would not be able to stand here today with my colleagues to mark International Women’s Day and honour the ongoing work of many inspiring women in Enfield.”

Cllr Brett also gave voice to the borough’s #MyVoteEnfield campaign, which aims to help all residents who are eligible to register to vote. With local elections scheduled to take place on 3 May, adults in Enfield are being urged to check that their names are on the electoral register.

The voting theme was explored further at an event at Palmers Green Library following the unveiling ceremony. Enfield’s Youth Parliament gave a speech on the importance of voting from a young person’s perspective and they were joined by other high-profile speakers.

At sun-down on 8 March, the Civic Centre will be lit up in purple - the colour commonly associated with the suffragette movement and which has been adopted by the International Women's Day Campaign this year. Enfield Council Cabinet Members and officers will be present at the lighting ceremony.

To find out more about Enfield and Democracy, go to electoral services. Anyone wanting to vote in the local elections on 3 May must be registered by Tuesday, 17 April. You can vote in Enfield’s local council election if you are 18 years or over on polling day, a British citizen, a qualifying Commonwealth citizen or a citizen of the European Union resident in Enfield.

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