Theresa May hails 'heroism' of suffragettes as centenary celebrations start

Women's equality still a dream after 100 years

It was 100 years ago that women were given the right to vote for the first time - albeit dependent on them having to fulfil certain criteria, such as being older than 30 and being a property owner, or married to one.

Speaking to Piers Morgan on Good Morning Britain on Tuesday, the centenary of women's suffrage in the UK, Rudd said that it would be hard to give a legal pardon to those in the movement who used arson and violence as methods of protest. When Emmeline Pankhurst founded the Women's Social and Political Union in 1903, it was the beginning of a revolution.

"In terms of pardoning for arson, that is a little trickier".

In the crackdown ordered by Winston Churchill, then the home secretary, police officers punched marchers and "pulled on women's breasts", according to local media reports. The present has no right to reach back into the past and wipe their convictions, in both senses of the word, from the record.

When asked if she believes the woman should be pardoned, she said: 'That is more tricky, I have to say, we have done it before with Turing's law and I will certainly look at individual cases. Convictions of suffragettes were politically motivated and bore no relation to the acts committed.

"There is also more to be done to raise awareness of the role played by Indian princess Sophia Duleep Singh in the Suffragette movement, and there are many suggestions of gay relationships within the movement that deserve wider exposure, but the history of those times - so often written by men - was coy at keeping official records of them". Before her death Davison was jailed eight times, went on hunger strike seven times and was force-fed 49 times.

She added: "We now face the prospect of our country's public debate becoming oppressively hostile and participation in it a risk which many are unprepared to run".

Councillor Emsley is inspired by Annie Kenney, a suffragette from Oldham, who in her book "Memories of a Militant" described the proposals to give women the vote: "In 1917 the question of granting the vote to women was discussed in Parliament".

Today is a historic day as it celebrates the day women got the vote thanks to the Suffragette movement. A Sikh princess, Sophia Duleep Singh, threw herself in front of the prime minister's vehicle.

Labour's shadow cabinet met at the Museum of London, now home to an exhibition on the suffragettes.

"It is a bit that it's not women's place to be doing things like that", she said.

The academic said there was "common ground" between Suffragism and groups such as the recent #MeToo movement against sexual harassment.

To memorialise her rebellious night in parliament, Tony Benn broke the rules by screwing a plaque into the wall of her cupboard.

At least the suffragists and suffragettes were united in their ultimate goal.

Although she was twice put in Holloway prison, she advocated non-violent means of protest such as withholding taxes and census boycotts.

She said attitudes were also changing among men, particularly those who would have previously dismissed "feminist" arguments.

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