People living in Longhorsley joined the team behind the successful Emily Wilding Davison programme on the village green at the weekend for the unveiling of a plaque in memory of their most famous resident.
The Suffragette died after being struck by King George V’s horse during the running of the 1913 Epsom Derby.
The plaque records that Emily had set off from her mother’s home in Longhorsley at the start of her fateful journey to Epsom, as well as remembering that it was the village green where she honed her speech-making skills in support of women’s equality in Edwardian Britain.
It was provided as part of the Emily Inspires! programme of events and activities to record the centenary of her death last year. Emily’s association with Longhorsley began when her mother Margaret set up home in the village after she moved back north following the death of her husband Charles Davison.
Margaret opened a small bakery shop in the village and Emily was a frequent visitor, particularly when she was recovering from the brutality of her treatment and force-feeding after being imprisoned as a result of her Suffragette activities.
Greater Morpeth Development Trust (GMDT), which played an active role in the programme, organised the installation of the plaque with support from the Heritage Lottery Fund, Longhorsley Parish Council, Longhorsley Local History Society and Northumberland County Council. It was made by Falon Nameplates employee David Dishman, whose great-grandmother was Emily’s cousin.
Coun Andrew Tebbutt, who chaired the Emily Inspires! project, told villagers it had been ‘a long journey’ to organise the year-long tribute, which actually began in 2008 with the restoration of the Davison family grave, where she is buried, in St Mary’s Churchyard, Morpeth.
He praised the committed contribution made by GMDT to deliver the programme, along with the personal efforts of project director Penni Blythe-Jones and the county council.
“Together we ensured Emily’s true story was told during the centennial year of her death,” he added.