I began this blog as a History PhD student researching aspects of Parliament and women in the UK, c.1900-1945. After seven years of part-time study I finished my PhD at the Institute of Contemporary History, King’s College London in August 2012. I work full-time as a professional archivist at the Parliamentary Archives, in the area of public services and outreach.
I have a strong interest in the women’s suffrage struggle, particularly in how it affected Parliament in terms of petitioning, lobbying and militant activity within the Palace of Westminster. Over the next few years I will be spending increasing amounts of time working on Vote 100, a project to mark 100 years of votes for (some) women in 2018.
My PhD research was on the passage of legislation affecting women’s lives and gender equality, especially the following Acts of Parliament:
- Parliament (Qualification of Women) Act 1918
- Sex Disqualification (Removal) Act 1919
- Equal Guardianship Act 1925
- Equal Franchise Act 1928
One of the things the Sex Disqualification (Removal) Act 1919 did was to allow women to enter some professions, including law. I recently became a Champion for First 100 Years, a project to mark 100 years of women in the legal profession in 2019.
My PhD also examined the role of women in Parliamentary select committees and standing committees in the interwar period (especially the women MPs, but also women as witnesses and advisers).
Finally, I researched women staff in Parliament, c.1900-1945. I’m primarily interested in women who worked for either the House of Lords or House of Commons administrations. If you have a woman ancestor who worked for the Lords or Commons in this period, I would be very interested to hear from you! I’d particularly love to see photos of any such women.
If you want to read the full thesis it is online at the King’s Research Portal.