Suffragette family brought back together for commemoration

Davison family, all descended from Emily's father.
Davison family, all descended from Emily's father.

FAMILY members from near and far were brought together to commemorate their famous relative, Suffragette Emily Wilding Davison.

The women’s rights’ campaigner was laid to rest in St Mary’s Churchyard in Morpeth after her fatal Derby protest that saw her hit by the King’s horse as she attempted to pin the Suffragette colours to it.

Relations from Morpeth welcomed others from across the UK and abroad for the 100th anniversary of Emily’s funeral on June 15. And for the Davison branch of the family there was a special treat as they enjoyed Sunday lunch at Winton House in Dacre Street, now the Masonic Lodge, which was home to Emily’s family before her birth.

The get-together was organised by Elinor Whitaker, of Bristol, who is the great granddaughter of Emily’s half-sister Isabel. She said: “Emily was born to her father’s second wife and her mother had lots of family so a lot of people in Morpeth are related to that side of the family, but we are from the other side.

“We had 21 people at the dinner, including relatives’ husbands and wives. It was really good to have it at Winton House, which is where the family lived for six years, and two of the masons showed us round and told us the history of the building. Charles Chisholm Davison had been a mason and his name is on the wall.

“It was amazing to meet all of these relatives.”

There were descendants from Emily’s half-brother Charles Chisholm Davison, half-sisters Isabel and Amy, and sister Letitia, but they were only a small number of family members as Emily’s father had 13 children.

There will be another reunion, maybe next year in the south of England or Paris.

But Mrs Whitaker said the family had all enjoyed their experience in Morpeth.

She said: “We all had an amazing weekend at the Town Hall reception, the play, and the huge procession through to the churchyard where all of Morpeth and the surrounding areas seemed to turn out to cheer us on and all the ladies dressed in Suffragette costumes.”

Pictured left to right are: Marijke Tombs (Australia), Elinor Whitaker (Bristol), Pamela Davison (Hampshire), Lisa Rutten (Australia), Rod Bilton (Liverpool), Annie Clousier (Rennes, France), Pierre DeBaecker (Paris), Josseline DeBaecker (Paris), Nicola Lloyd Bostock (Brighton), Michael and Janet Davison (Sussex), Peter Lloyd Bostock (Brighton) and Geoffrey Davison (Australia).