Suffragette Square, just off Bridgefield Street in Stockport town centre, was opened in 2018 by Stockport Council, on the 100th anniversary of women gaining the legal right to vote.

Over the past six months, Groundwork Greater Manchester, Stockport Council and Totally Stockport have worked together and with local communities to revitalise the Square, refresh the planting, improving biodiversity, improve the architecture to make it more user friendly and highlight the significance of the Square’s name.

The Square celebrates the achievements of four influential women from Stockport, all of whom were nominated by local people in a poll run by the council to find a name for the Square:

  • Elsie Plant
  • Hannah Winbold
  • Gertrude Powicke
  • Elizabeth Raffald

Groundwork’s community engagement team have been speaking to local people about the Suffragette’s, learning which women inspire them in their life and encouraging them to submit creative ideas for the Square.

Several sixth form students at Stockport Grammar School decided to focus on equal rights for women as part of a recent art project as well as pupils from St Thomas’s primary school and girls from a local youth group.

Aubrey Lawton-Cooper, age 10 from St Thomas’ Primary School designed a depiction of Elsie Plant, which was selected as a winning design and will soon be erected as a silhouette statue in the Square.

On Friday 8th March to celebrate International Women’s Day, Aubrey and 40 other members of the community including MP Navendu Mishra and Stockport Mayor, Councillor Graham Greenhalgh, met at the Square to share their ideas for the square and plant one of the new trees.

The remaining artwork will be erected in the Square before the end of March along with additional planting in the Square reflecting the colours of the Suffragettes – green, white and blue.

A celebration day will take place on Saturday 23rd March as part of the Weekend of Culture Celebration.