RGU project on North-east suffragettes wins Heritage Lottery Fund grant

Robert Gordon University (RGU) has received a Stories, Stones and Bones grant of £8,300 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for a project on the suffragettes in North-east Scotland.

Led by Professor Sarah Pedersen, Professor in Communication and Media at RGU, it is based primarily on the correspondence and work of Caroline Phillips, a journalist and activist for women’s rights. The project is part of Scotland’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology.

The focus of the project is a collection of correspondence held at Aberdeen Art Gallery, written to and by Ms Phillips, who was secretary of the local Women’s Social and Political Union (WSPU) branch in Aberdeen in the early years of the 20th century. She was also a reporter at the Aberdeen Daily Journal, a forerunner of the Press & Journal, an unusual job for a woman at the time.

It will involve a number of events held throughout Autumn 2017 and Spring 2018 to engage the public with the history of the suffrage campaign in the region in partnership with Aberdeen City Council, Aberdeen Art Gallery and Glasgow Women’s Library. These will include talks to school pupils studying the suffragettes for Higher History, exhibitions and talks in libraries in the city and Aberdeenshire, and work with the Aberdeen Women’s Alliance.

Professor Pedersen, of RGU’s School of Creative and Cultural Business and author of The Scottish Suffragettes and the Press, to be published this summer, said: “2018 will mark the centenary of women gaining the vote in the UK. Many people do not realise how active the campaign for women’s suffrage was in the North-east of Scotland. It is the aim of this project to raise public awareness of the activities of the suffragettes in the area and the unique collection of suffrage correspondence held in the city.”


Release by Kate Yuill
Communications Officer | Business, Management and Law
Press and Media Enquiries