Guildford and District Women's Suffrage Society report for 1910. With balance sheet and printed rules, altered in manuscript
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- SHC Ref No: G122/7/1
- Repository: Surrey History Centre, Woking
- Date: 1910
- Format: Archives
- Description: [The Guildford and District Women?s Suffrage Society was formed on 11 February 1910 after a petition for the enfranchisement of women gained 580 signatures from voters outside polling stations in Guildford during the general election on 25 January. The petition was led by Mrs Swinburne and Miss Noeline Baker under the direction of the Surrey, Sussex and Hants Organisation of Suffrage Societies.
The inaugural meeting was held in the Judges? Room, County and Borough Halls with Lady Chance as Chair and the Vice Presidents and Executive Committee were elected. Noeline became the Hon. Secretary; Lady Roberts of Henley Park became the first President and her husband, Lord Owen Roberts a member of the executive committee. The Surrey, Sussex and Hants Organisation of Suffrage Societies sent Miss Gordon, a paid organiser, to help set up the branch. The first public meeting was held on 2 March at the Constitutional Hall chaired by Mr Nevill with Miss Gordon as speaker.
At the beginning of March the Guildford society became affiliated to the National Union of Women?s Suffrage Societies (NUWSS) by which time they had 35 members. On 27 May 1910 the Guildford society joined the Surrey, Sussex and Hants Organisation which was renamed The Surrey, Sussex and Hants Federation and Miss Seymour was elected to represent the society on the Federation Committee.
The Guildford society supported the Conciliation Bill of 1910 which proposed that women who met a property qualification would be able to vote. This was demonstrated through a public meeting at the Constitutional Hall on 15 June, writing letters to local MP Mr Horne and taking part in demonstrations in London at the Queen?s Hall on 28 June and Trafalgar Square on 9 July with a banner representing the branch made by Miss Swinburne.
The Surrey, Sussex and Hants Federation formed a committee to organize a demonstration in Guildford to support the Bill. Noeline Baker was Honorary Secretary to the committee and Miss Duncan was leant by Federation to help organize the event. The demonstration was held on 29 October with a procession from the station square to the Borough Halls where a mass meeting was held. Mr Arthur Chapman, vice-chairman of Surrey County Council took the Chair and Lady Frances Balfour, Miss Frances Sterling, Mr Brailsford and Sir William Chance were the speakers. An overflow meeting was held in the Eastern Hall chaired by Sir Owen Robert and two overflow meetings were held in the street. By the end of 1910 the Guildford and District Women?s Suffrage Society had 51 members.
On 1 November 1911 the Guildford, Godalming, Haslemere and Farnham branches of the NUWSS held a Sweated Industries Exhibition at the Borough Hall, Guildford to demonstrate the conditions women were working in. Six sweated workers were at the centre with two hundred exhibits of work and a series of speeches were given on sweated labour and women?s suffrage.
On 16 May 1913 a ?Suffrage Shop? (also referred to as ?Suffrage Office?) was opened at 1a Mount Street by Miss Philippa Fawcett. The society used the facility to host meetings and occupied this property until 1919.]
- Level: Item
- Access Status: Open.
- For more information contact: Surrey History Centre Collections Catalogue
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