Emmeline Pankhurst (1858-1921) was the leading political activist, who organized the UK suffragette movement. She set up the Women’s Social and Political Union, campaigning for women’s suffrage and was imprisoned many times for militant behaviour.
This bronze statue depicts Pankhurst standing on a household chair giving a speech with her arm outstretched pointing towards the Free Trade Hall, a significant building in suffragette history. Officially titled ‘Rise up Women!’ the statue has fast become known locally as ‘Our Emmeline’. It was the culmination of a five year campaign to erect a statue of a ‘woman of significance to Manchester’. Emmeline Pankhurst was the overwhelming choice of the public, winning 5,356 votes from people all over the world in an online survey. The Emmeline Pankhurst Statue Campaign was then set up which brought the project to fruition. It was unveiled on 14 December 2018, the centenary of the Representation of the People Act which gave some women the right to vote in General Elections. This was the first statue of a woman to be erected in Manchester in 100 years, the only other being the earlier one of Queen Victoria.
In 2021 ‘Rise up Women!’ won the PSSA’s prestigious Marsh Award for Excellence in Public Sculpture.
Location: St. Peter's Square, Manchester.