ELWC's Blue Plaques Project

by Exeter Labour Womens Council in Exeter, England, United Kingdom

ELWC's Blue Plaques Project
We did it
On 23rd December 2018 we successfully raised £415 with 24 supporters in 28 days

Raising funds for new blue plaques commemorating the two of the first women councillors in Exeter; Edith Splatt (Indep) & Rachel Allen (LP)

by Exeter Labour Womens Council in Exeter, England, United Kingdom

 New stretch target

Any extra money raised will be donated to the Civic Society.

We have already raised an amazing £600! Help up raise the remaining £400 needed.


The Representation of the People Act was passed 100 years ago this year which allowed some, not all, women to vote and stand for Parliamentary election in the United Kingdom. This allowed women to engage with their communities, lead and have their say in the issues that affect their lives like never before.

We have come so far since 1918 however we still have a way to go. Across the country there is a huge disparity in the number of blue plaques dedicated to women as against men as highlighted by the recent article in the Guardian calling for change. In Exeter of the over forty blue plaques which commemorate the important people of our city only four are dedicated to individual women.

We recognise that women’s history is often hidden, often in the domestic sphere, and often not recorded or celebrated publicly. Exeter Labour Party Womens Council have therefore decided to lead a project, in this important year for women, to raise money for two new blue plaques dedicated to two of the first women councillors in Exeter. 

Cllr Splatt and Cllr Allen

Edith Splatt and Rachel Allen were two of the first women councillors in Exeter. Edith worked as a 'scientific dress maker' and had a shop on Sidwell Street. She then worked for the Express and Echo writing a womens column that would often include a sneaky update on the Suffragette movement. Edith stood as an Independent Councillor and was known as the Councillor to go to if you wanted to get things done with people travelling from across the city to get her support. 

Rachel Allen was the first women Councillor for Exeter Labour Party in Exeter. Rachel was originally from Wales and worked as a nurse. During her time as her Councillor she set up mother and child health centres in the city. Sadly Rachel died three years into her term but she paved the way for women in public life in Exeter, seeing a total of 15 women on the city council in 2018.

We need you!

We can’t do this alone so are asking for your support. We believe that celebrating these trailblazing women in Exeter’s political sphere and publicising their stories will serve not only as a celebration of their achievements, but of those of the women of Exeter today, and could encourage more women in our communities to see themselves within the prism of political life.

Please be aware

Any additional money raised will be donated to the Civic Society.

If you want any further information or if want to find out how you can get involved with ELWC please email [email protected]

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