Remembering tales of remarkable women

Women in Ipswich gathered to celebrate International Women's Day and learn about the history of the

Women in Ipswich gathered to celebrate International Women's Day and learn about the history of the Cornhill and Greyfriars. Picture: SUZANNE DAY - Credit: Archant

The great women of Ipswich have been celebrated during a special tour to mark International Women’s Day.

A group of ladies, and one brave man, set off from the tourist information centre in St Stephen’s Church to learn about the remarkable women the town has produced.

Leading the way around Ipswich was tour guide Evelyn Hewing, whose knowledge about the history of our town - and the women who have lived here - was impeccable.

Joining the Remarkable Women of Ipswich walk, organised by the Ipswich Tour Guides, was retired teacher Ann Piper - who was excited she managed to get the last ticket for the sold out event.

She said: “I’ve been to the Women100 exhibition at the Ipswich Art Gallery and really enjoyed it, and it made me want to come on this walk.”

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Remarkable Ipswich women

Particularly inspirational was the story of archaeologist Nina Layard, who was one of the first females in her field.

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After working on an archaeological dig at Ipswich Greyfriars, she wrote a paper on her findings. However because she was a woman, it was a male colleague that had to present her hard work.

Thankfully she managed to break down the boundaries between men and women in archaeology and went on to create the Prehistoric Society of East Anglia.

The tales of Ipswich women delved much further back into history, to when women were burnt at the stake on the Cornhill because of their religious and moral choices.

The tour also heard of the great work of former Mayor of Ipswich, Mary Whitmore MBE, for welcoming the Windrush generation to the town.

At the end of the walk Ms Hewing said: “It was great to remind people about the women of Ipswich. I didn’t even have time to talk about all of the inspirational women.”

Take a look at our readers’ messages to the inspirational women in their lives and share your memories of inspirational Ipswich women on our Ipswich Remembers Facebook page.

The tour was part of a series of Afternoon Tea Walks arranged by the tourist information centre.

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