National Trust Autumn Season – Women and Power

Carmel Smickersgill, Tours & Activities Editor

This year, the National Trust have programmed a range of events celebrating the influential, inspirational and often forgotten women who lived and worked in historical sites of interest throughout the UK. In 2018 we’ve celebrated the centenary of the Representation of the People’s act which allowed some women and all men to vote. Events, exhibitions, on-site tours and new creative commissions have been taking place in properties with particular ties to the suffrage movement under the overarching theme of ‘Women and Power’. The season aims to explore the complexities of the roles power and gender have played in our history whilst giving a voice to the sometimes hidden lives and legacies of women who may have not made it into the history books. We have highlighted some of our picks from the current exhibitions and upcoming events from national trust properties for Autumn.

Reconnect with some of the North West’s most beautiful heritage sites and embrace these women’s stories. Discover a tree dripping with 300 ceramic bells based on the local folklore of native bluebells in the woodland surrounding Speke Hall. Or learn about the life of Adelaide Watt, the last owner of the hall who rerouted the plans for the Manchester ship canal as well as having a fascination with ‘pig courts’. Be transported back to 1918 in Dunham Massey’s Imagining Stamford Hospital exhibition. Archive photography and newly commisioned installations sit side by side, detailing the time during World War One, in which the house was temporarily a military hospital. Finally, be sure to visit Lyme where, as you walk around the house, you will be immersed in the trial of Ellen Turner’s abduction and her subsequent treatment in the press.

It’s an exciting autumn of previously unheard stories and exceptional women. The majority of events are free, however, usual admission charges to the properties still apply.

Here are our picks

  • 1. Serena Korda: The Bell Tree at Speke Hall

    Serena Korda: The Bell Tree at Speke Hall
    Photo by Chris Egon Searle

    Serena Korda: The Bell Tree at Speke Hall, Liverpool, 8 September 2018–28 July 2019, free entry - Visit now

    The Bell Tree by award winning contemporary artist Serena Korda responds to England’s alternative history of fairy-tale folklore, the ancient forest at Speke Hall and the legacy of hidden rebellion that surrounds the historic Tudor home.

  • 2. Stability and Survival at Speke Hall

    National Trust

    Stability and Survival at Speke Hall, Liverpool, 26 September 2018–29 March 2019, free entry - Visit now

    This autumn, learn about the inspiring life of Miss Adelaide Watt – an independent and powerful Victorian woman who fought the forces of modernity to preserve Speke Hall and all its treasures for generations to come.

Things to do right now

Powered by culturehosts
Everyman Rock 'n' Roll panto The Snow Queen
Families 24 November 2018–19 January 2019, from £15.00

Rock ‘n’ Roll Panto: The Snow Queen at Liverpool Everyman

Mandy Barker: Hong Kong Soup at CFCCA Manchester
Exhibitions 12 October 2018–20 January 2019, FREE

Mandy Barker: Hong Kong Soup at CFCCA

Charwei Tsai: Bulaubulau at CFCCA
Exhibitions 12 October 2018–20 January 2019, FREE

Charwei Tsai: Bulaubulau at CFCCA

ReFrame at Manchester Art Gallery
Exhibitions 20 October 2018–20 January 2019, FREE

ReFrame at Manchester Art Gallery

Cinema 7 December 2018–20 January 2019, from £5

Slapstick Film Season at HOME

HOME at Christmas
Festivals 13 December 2017–20 January 2019,

HOME at Christmas

PUSH Festival 2019 at HOME
Festivals 11–26 January 2019,

PUSH Festival 2019 at HOME

LIQUID CRYSTAL DISPLAY at Site Gallery
Exhibitions 29 September 2018–27 January 2019, FREE

LIQUID CRYSTAL DISPLAY at Site Gallery

Craft Beer Tour Around Manchester
Food and Drink 1 November 2018–1 February 2019, from £30

Craft Beer Tour Around Manchester

Motion Sickness at STOCK Gallery
Exhibitions 12 January–1 February 2019, FREE

Motion Sickness at STOCK Gallery

The Producers - A Mel Brooks Musical at the Royal Exchange
Music 30 November 2018–2 February 2019, from £10.00

The Producers – A Mel Brooks Musical at the Royal Exchange