On 6th February 2018, lady bell ringers from Hornchurch and West Ham teamed up to celebrate the centenary of The Representation of the People Act 1918 which gave some women the right to vote for the first time.
The Suffragette movement, led by Emmeline Pankhurst, had been established since 1903. They were determined to obtain the right to vote for women by any means, even if it involved breaking the law. Women paid the same taxes as men and were subject to the same laws, so why not the same voting rights?
During the war years (1914 –18) women undertook jobs normally carried out by men and proved they could work just as well. This strengthened their argument for voting rights which came shortly after.
Bell ringing celebrations
Bells are often rung to celebrate important anniversaries and for this occasion, a team of ladies rang continuously for about 45 minutes to achieve a quarter peal of Plain Bob Doubles. The ringing took place at St Andrew’s, Hornchurch and was conducted by Liz Rayner of West Ham:
Tuesday, 6 February 2018
1260 Plain Bob Doubles
1. Julie A Bloomfield
2. Heather Rayner
3. Helen J Carter
4. Elizabeth C Rayner (C)
5. Leonie J McCaughren
6. Rebecca A Woolward
Rung by an all ladies band to mark the 100th Anniversary this day of The Representation Of The People Act 1918 which allowed women to vote for the first time.
The photo shows the ladies that took part: