Since 2014, Councillor Andrew Simcock has been leading the WoManchester Statue project to erect a statue of a woman of significance to Manchester. In 2016 it was announced that Emmeline Pankhurst, inspiring leader of the Suffragettes, was selected after a vote by over 5,000 people to be the subject of the first new statue of a woman there for over a century.
So I was delighted to make it into the final 6 shortlisted proposals for St Peter’s Square, Manchester. All six commissioned bronze maquettes – mine is titled ‘Rise up, women’ – were unveiled at the Houses of Parliament on the 27 February 2017, before going on show in Manchester.
You can imagine how thrilled I was to finally win this prestigious commission, with my background in promoting women’s rights and gender equality over many years. I won the public vote and was the unanimous choice of the selection panel – pheww.
With the help of 11-year old Fatima Shahid from Newall Green Primary School, planning permission was granted on the 8 February 2018, so all systems go.
A bronze edition of 12 of the maquettes were sold to raise funds for the main Our Emmeline statue. There is now a mini-version of the full-sized statue that was 3D scanned and made in a bronze edition (40cm) high with 10 percent of the sales price split between Manchester rights charities Pankhurst Trust and Wythenshawe Safespots.
See section on the Emmeline Pankhurst Commission and my blogs about why we needed a statue of Emmeline, why I wanted to sculpt her and to follow the making of the clay maquette ready for casting in bronze, right through to the unveiling in Mancehster.