Hardwick's women and power

From the first woman of Hardwick to the last, their stories are very different but unite with struggles of women's place in society,and the changing face of that. This year we look at the generations of women at Hardwick and what power meant for them.

Both Hardwick's founder, the Countess of Shrewsbury (Bess of Hardwick), and Duchess Evelyn, the last lady to live here, made their mark and have their place in history. We take a closer look at what their status and power afforded them. We also consider the impact of the suffrage movement, how the family responded to this, and what gaining the vote for some women meant to those at Hardwick.

Servants from Hardwick Hall sit out the front

Power for the women of Hardwick? 

Discover the impact of the suffrage movement on Hardwick

Signage for Bess Wealth Power Status exhibition

Bess and her wealth 

Explore what made Bess one of Elizabethan England's powerful women