I’m delighted to announce receipt of an early Christmas present in the form of a Live Well Make Art microgrant from Cartwheel Arts which will fund my research project into using journal therapy with patients living with Crohn’s Disease.

I’m really excited to announce that ‘How To Be WomanLEIGH’, my dramatic interpretation of the stories surrounding the suffragettes visiting Leigh in 1909, will be performed at the Turnpike Gallery in early 2019. Date to be confirmed.

‘How to be WomanLEIGH’ is an imaginative dramatic interpretation of the research recently conducted into a suffragette demonstration at the Co-operative Hall in Leigh in 1909. The suffragettes believed that they were representing all women in their fight for the vote but the three women in this performance represent the range of very different attitudes, influences and social conditions of the time. The first voice is that of the nameless old woman who, in a newspaper account of the attack on the Co-operative Hall, ‘was seen to knock a girl down and severely thrash her.…. It was a painful scene, but was soon over, and the crowd and the Suffragist passed on.’ The second voice is that of Florence Clarkson herself who though ‘rather meek and mild, and limp physically…did not feel like giving in’ and the third is of Florence Hindshaw who may or may not have paid 3d to sit in the Gallery of The Hippodrome to hear Miss Florence Clarkson speak but did go on to become the secretary of the Leigh Women’s Suffrage Society, a ‘non-militant non-party’. Written by Julie McKiernan and performed by Katherine McDermott, this one woman show is an attempt to give back voices to all those women who played their part in life-changing times but whose lives were deemed not important enough to be recorded.