WBG Update 4

Hello again my wonderful friends and colleagues.  This latest update is a very emotional for me, as founder of the Women’s Banner Group I have tried to bring women from all backgrounds, experiences, ages and passions together.  The response from each and every one of you has been overwhelming, we have got big very quickly!

Over the past couple of weeks, I have been speaking with many of you and really taking stock of what it is we are doing.  The impact we are having is bigger than I could have ever imagined and that is in no small part because of you!

The community patchwork banner has inspired so many of you and really galvanised the respect and camaraderie women have when coming together.  

I feel it is hugely important to give this banner and your input the recognition it deserves.

It is for this reason, and after numerous sleepless nights and discussions with the Banner Makers and our wonderful Mary Turner that we have taken the decision to delay the procession of the silk baner until next year so that this year can be a celebration about the hard work each and every one have you have put in.

The Durham Miners Association are so supportive and excited about this particular banner that they have organised for it to be blessed at the Cathedral on the day of the Big Meeting and the Cathedral would like to display it for the week following.  

Your hard work and passion is truly being celebrated, and rightly so!

The Banner Makers are still committed to producing our historic silk banner so we won’t be losing that! In fact because of the sheer numbers of women who have become interested and the continuing stream of “inspirational women” emails I am getting, we have decided to hold a workshop where all of you can come and tell us how you would like our group to be represented in history.

It is so important for as many of you as possible to attend our up and coming sessions to really make the impact we want to on Gala day.

With 2018 being the year of 100 years since the vote and international year of the woman, we really want to recognise and celebrate our history.  Because of this we would like to march in the gala as a procession just like the suffragists and suffragettes did by using Standards, individual banners carried by women, as a show of force.  We are offering you the opportunity to come along and make your very own!!

We would look to include this in the sashes session, henceforth to be known as the Sashes and Standards session on the 23rd June, each women can use one of a choice of templates that Emma Shankland from the Durham Banner Makers will put together, to paint their own and also will be able to add words that mean something to them.. It will look so impressive marching with so many of these.  

I would love you all to be even more actively involved in all the exciting things we have planned.  We have a number of “appearances” coming up and are looking for anyone willing to staff a stall with us.  

Most importantly for the following:

REDHILLS REVOLUTION: A Celebration Of Women, Wednesday 11th July:

Here we take over Redhills for an entire day.  We need people to staff a stand, to speak to people about us and to help with the smooth running of the event.  This is going to be the official public unveiling in Durham for our community banner and we have some absolutely incredible entertainment booked for the day.  Help is highly welcomed.


Old King Cole Festival in Beamish, Sat 3oth June/ Sun 1st July:

We have a stall for the weekend of the 30th June/1st July and we are also taking part in their march.  This is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate our heritage and also to tell people about us.

Please get in touch if you are willing to come along and help out.

I will be sending some dates out very soon and please do get along to as many as you can, we are so keen for this to be as far reaching as possible!!

Respect and love to you all

In Solidarity


WBG Update 3

Hello Ladies,

Apologies it has taken so long to send you our next update.

We have been so busy organising, planning and implementing our ideas and goals. What an unbelievable response and reaction to what we have achieved so far.

I’d like to stop for a moment and thank you all for every involvement no matter how small or how substantial.  Your input has allowed the idea I had many months ago to become a reality and grow beyond what I could have ever hoped.

We are making history! We are remembering and celebrating women’s work of the past. We are supporting women and fighting good fights now! We are progressing the rights of women, empowering and encouraging women for the future. I thank each and every one of you for being a part of our history.

We held a Patchwork mop up session on the 25th March in Shadforth. The sections are coming together so beautifully. We are not far from having the whole thing completed, our first project, the community patchwork banner, will soon be done.

We have also held a meeting with Durham Banner Makers to discuss the suggestions put forward for the official silk banner.  We have chosen those to be included and we can not wait to unveil the banner when it is done.

Emma and Lotte from the Banner Makers have done some mock ups of how they see the banner following your input and suggestions, they have managed to capture your passions and ideas so perfectly it is unbelievable. Their ability to portray emotion is unrivaled and it is only since working with them I have begun to see what goes into making a full miners banner and I am even more grateful that they have chosen to become involved but more than that, they are equally as passionate about the project as every one of us.

Following on from our discussion and subsequent poll, we have made a decision on our banner title:

Durham Women’s Collective.

We have started our press for the group and have had publications in The Sunderland Echo, The Northern Echo and have been interviewed for BBC Look North.

If you would like a copy of our press release to send in to your local paper/radio or Tv station please do email us as all press is welcomed.  Also, if you do see or read anything could you send that to us so we can keep a log?

Please keep sharing our just giving page. We need to raise as much money as we can to achieve all the things we want to do.

Any fundraising is welcomed we will be discussing other options for fundraising soon.


Coming Up

On Sat 26th May we will be meeting to.discuss all the input to the patchwork banner.

I would very much like all those groups and individuals involved to come along.  

We are going to be finishing the final stitches and I would love you to be there to see the completion of your hard work.  Not only that, we are going to be asking the groups to talk about your piece and what it means to you. A chance to put on record your involvement.

Please try to get at least 1 member of your group to this meeting.

I look forward to doing more together.

In solidarity

Laura xx



23rd June. Accessory Craft Session. Easington Welfare Hall.

11th July. official unveiling. Redhills Durham 3pm onwards.

14th July. Durham Miners Gala. 8am. Market Square.