6th February 2018 marks 100 years since some women in the UK were given the right to vote. In celebration of this momentous anniversary, we’ve put together a list of 20 inspirational, tenacious, powerful women who have done a whole host of incredible things in the past century.
You don’t need to tell a copywriter about the power of words. I spend much of my working weeks with a thesaurus strapped to my hip in a makeshift DIY holster, and insist on writing everything with pen and paper first so I can rethink my word choice when I type up the notes. Hand-selected and placed in the right order, words have the power to do a whole raft of things, including: reassure, reinforce, remind, re-educate …or start a revolution.
As we’ve heard countless times, with great power comes great responsibility. For all the hard work words can do in the name of progress, there is always a risk that just a few can unravel that revolution when it is just reaching a tipping point.
On January 10th 1918, Earl Curzon made the following statement in the House of Lords:
Thankfully, his efforts to derail the bill failed. On the 6th February, the vote was passed and the Representation of the People Bill was made an Act of Parliament. From that point on, all women over the age of 30 who met a certain property qualification were able to vote. I can’t imagine what it must have felt like during those nail-biting days, wondering if the words of one powerful man could undermine the relentless slog of an army of women. So rather than sit and wonder, we thought we'd do something to mark the occasion, fill the gap with positivity instead of nerves, and take the time to hero some incredible ladies...
When we set up Mac&Moore, there were many elements of our business that we weren’t 100% sure about, or that we knew would need ironing out over time. One thing we agreed almost immediately was that we wanted to use our position to empower, assist, mentor and celebrate other women as much as we could. This started on day one, with the creation of our #GirlsDoneGood hashtag, which has been firmly situated on our email signatures and social media ever since. By contributing to the conversation, we can hopefully strengthen the foundations of female voices, on which other women can join us and stand together in the battle for equality.
20 days, #20GirlsDoneGood
Every day for the next 20 days we’ll be championing and profiling a different incredible lady on our Instagram page (@macandmoore), so make sure you check back and see the full shortlist. We’d love to hear your thoughts as the days go on regarding other additions and women we may not even be aware of yet, we’ve already got writers, activists, comedians and even an astronaut in the mix.
It’s safe to say that we’ve achieved a lot over the last 100 years, but unfortunately we’ve still got a long way to go. This has never been more apparent with the rapid acceleration of the conversation around #metoo and #timesup. This year’s Golden Globes was a shining example of what can be achieved when women work together, using strength, poise, dignity and intelligence to make a powerful statement. The World Economic Forum has predicted that it will take a further 217 years to achieve true equality in the workplace. The UK reported a 16.9% pay gap between men and women in 2017 meaning women effectively worked for free from 9th November 2017 until the end of the year. Whilst 6th February 1918 was a landmark day for women’s rights, it took another 10 years for women to be given equal voting rights to men. We can only hope that in another 10 years, we’ll be looking at a much more equal landscape for all women, all over the world. . . and ideally MUCH sooner!
P.S One of the main reasons cited for granting women the right to vote was to reward them for carrying out essential work during WW1. My Grandma, Betty Moores was a vital part of the Land Army during WW2. You can see her in action below (far right in the first pic) being an absolute legend and absolute #GirlDoneGood!