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Campaigners fighting to redress nation's statue gender imbalance

CAMPAIGNERS across Britain are fighting to redress the nation’s statue gender imbalance, with appeals to raise tens of thousands for monuments honouring women’s struggles and achievements. 

In Brighton, an appeal to erect a bronze statue of the first suffragette to lose her life to the cause, Mary Clarke, is a quarter way to target.

Clarke died after she was beaten while demonstrating for women’s suffrage. There is currently no public memorial to her.

Jean Calder, chairwoman of trustees of the Mary Clarke statue appeal, said that she believes there is an issue with recognising “female bravery, heroism and courage… because where women do sometimes lose their life, they tend not to be in uniform.”

A mother and daughter in Dorset have hit their £100,000 target for a statue of fossil hunter and scientist Mary Anning, while campaigners have raised more than £33,000 to put a statue of novelist Virginia Woolf beside the Thames in Richmond. 

The Public Sculptures and Statues Association has recorded the existence of just 100 sculptures and busts of “real-life” women. Coinciding with International Women’s Day, the campaign group has launched the first public database to record the number of female statues across the nation. 


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