Our Community Engagement & Events intern Lucy, has written this weeks blog post, about a recent pop-up event she was involved with

She writes:

The Suffragette 2018 Pop-Up Event

What a great night we had on Saturday, when we popped up with our Suffragette Collection at The Brick Box Rooms, a live arts café, to celebrate the anniversary of The Representation of the People Act of 1918, which granted the vote to women over the age of 30 who met a property qualification. The same Act gave the vote to all men over the age of 21. The pop-up took place as part of The Make More Noise event hosted by the Brick Box Rooms and Live Cinema UK.

The event began in the evening, soon after opening the doors people began to arrive and there was a lively buzz in the air. Prior to the film, we invited people to get in role as a Emmeline Pankhurst in costume and play the board game Pank-A-Squith. The board game was used by the suffragettes as an educational device to show people the struggles women faced to get the right to vote and as a fundraiser for their campaign. The objective of the game is to get your suffragette counter from their home to the goal Parliament.

Playing Pank-a-squith
Playing Pank-a-squith

In another corner of the room, we shared The Suffragette Newspaper which contained reports of suspicious suffragette acts in Bradford, including militant arson attacks at mills causing thousands of pounds worth of damage and the dyeing of Chellow Dean Reservoir purple. We also had re-produced copies of campaign postcards from our collection. Many often satirical, one card red “No Vote, No Tax” women often refused to pay tax on the grounds they had no say within political sphere.

Using the printed campaign material for inspiration and collage, visitors created their own individual page for a zine that re-imagined what The Suffragette Newspaper 2018 would say now. The pages were often heart-warming with “Wishes for our Sisters”, political statements against trump and celebratory of female activist now like Malala Yousafzai. The zine was live risograph printed during the film screening  by Footprints Workers Co-operative in the café and people were able to take their collaboratively made zines hot off the press.

The event was a huge success and visitors were incredibly engaged in every aspect of the night, reading the newspaper articles through to the end and I often caught people taking photos so that they could read more at home.

Live Cinema UK showed incredibly moving silent footage from the Suffragette movement that was accompanied by live pianist Lillian Henley, followed by a celebration of noise and dance to a female DJ playing all the female disco hits. There is something to be said about collaborating with other amazing arts organisations in our city to not only enhance the accessibility to our collections but to strengthen the cultural offer of Bradford!

I’m sat at my desk now, four days later, with a warm fuzzy feeling as I read tweets from people who came along.

“Had an amazing evening @BrickBoxRooms celebrating 100 years since some women got the vote with some of my favourite inspirational ladies and best friends #struggleisnotover #makemorenoise




“We made more noise this weekend with @BradfordMuseums & @Lillian_Henley & @livecinemauk – check out this ace riso-printed zine we created on the night!”

Tweets like this remind me how important it is that the museum collections pop-up in the heart of the city for everyone to see in fun, friendly and participatory environments.

Coming Up –

International Women’s Day
The Brick Box Rooms, 5:30pm-9:00pm
8th March

Bradford Museums and Galleries are popping up at Brick Box to help celebrate International Womens Day.

Come and play games inspired by the Suffragette board game Pank-A-Squith. Listen to spoken word from Kirsty Taylor, the BBC Radio 3 New Voice winner, about suspicious suffragette acts in Bradford and pick up your own copy of The Suffragette Newspaper 2018 made by Bradford women now.

Throughout March there will also be an exhibition from our Photo Archive featuring incredible Bradford women and men who fought for Women’s rights, have acted radically, reformed education or changed the way women are perceived in the workplace.

For more information on the whole programme please visit: Brick Box Rooms facebook.

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