Exploring suffrage and the women in our history

2018 marked the centenary of a key victory in the struggle for suffrage which gave some women the right to vote. Our Women and Power programme explored the lives of those who fought for the vote, as well as those who influenced change throughout history.

With a year of events and exhibitions, visitors were able to discover how places we care for have been home to women of every background; women of incredible strength and determination, whose voices were often silenced.

What happened in 2018

Visitors were able to uncover stories about suffrage at properties like Killerton, Wightwick, Cragside, and Bodnant Garden, which have very special links to both sides of the movement. 

But many of the stories we told reached back much further than the 1918 Act of Parliament that granted women limited voting rights. At over 100 of the places we look after, we revealed the stories of women from across history, some of which have never been told. 

There were also collaborations with the National Portrait Gallery and the National Archives including exhibitions, the pop-up heritage project Suffragette City, and the specially commissioned creative project A Room of One’s Own.

Women’s history at the places we care for

We hope that, like us, you’re interested in learning from our shared history. Women’s achievements have not always been celebrated, which is something we’d like to challenge with ‘Women and Power’.

As a guardian of historic places, we have a special responsibility to highlight the ways real people have shaped their physical and cultural environments. The centenary of the vote is the perfect opportunity to make their voices heard.

Hear the hidden stories of women at Knole in the showrooms as part of A Woman's Place

Women and Power exhibitions, art installations and events 

2018 marked 100 years since some women were granted the right to vote. To honour this milestone, we explored stories and personalities from women’s history and the fight for female suffrage through exhibitions, events and more.