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Emily Williamson Plaque Campaign raised £1,220 from 74 supporters


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Closed 03/05/2022

raised of £1,200 target by 74 supporters

    Weʼve raised £1,220 to create the first plaque for a woman in Lancaster to commemorate Emily Williamson, conservationist and feminist.

    Funded on Tuesday, 3rd May 2022

    Don't have time to donate right now?


    Emily Williamson - the Lancaster woman who saved a million birds

    There are no plaques to women in Lancaster. It's time to change that.

    We want to start by commemorating a woman who saved millions of birds and transformed the lives of countless women.

    Emily Williamson was born at Highfield in Lancaster on 17th April 1855. In 1889, she became horrified by the mass slaughter of birds to provide feathers for fashionable ladies' hats. Millions of birds died each year, sometimes having their wings cut off while they were alive.

    To stop this cruelty she formed the Society for the Protection of Birds. All of its members were women. By doing this she took on an industry that was worth, at its peak, some £20 million a year. She was fighting fashion and finance in a society in which women couldn’t even vote. That took incredible courage.

    The society she founded grew to become the RSPB, the largest conservation organisation in Europe. In 1921, after over 30 years of campaigning, the Plumage Act was passed, ending the trade in exotic bird skins. Over 60 species were saved from extinction.

    To mark that centenary, we want to commemorate Emily's conservation achievements and her equally important work supporting education and training for women. She founded the Gentlewomen's Employment Association in Manchester, created the Princess Christian Training College for Nurses and introduced the Loan Training Fund, which helped to subsidise the costs of further education for young women, the first such scheme in the country.

    To celebrate this amazing daughter of Lancaster we want to put up a plaque, in conjunction with Lancaster Civic Society, and also arrange a celebratory event and exhibition in the Priory Church, where she was baptised. This will include schools and community events to spread the word about her life, her work and the way her legacy of saving nature continues here in Lancashire - and the world!

    We would really appreciate your support to commemorate this remarkable woman. If we exceed our target, the extra funds will go to local community conservation projects.



    • Emily Williamson Plaque Campaign1 month ago
      Emily Williamson Plaque Campaign

      Emily Williamson Plaque Campaign

      1 month ago

      A big thank you to everyone who has donated to the Emily plaque. We are busy trying to figure out where the plaque will go. The house she was born in is not accessible to the public, so it wouldn't be seen there. We are looking at either the Priory, where she was baptised, or Williamson Park, close to her birthplace. Both involve some complex negotiations about positions and permissions, but I hope we'll get there soon.

      Share this update to help us raise more

    • Emily Williamson Plaque Campaign9 months ago
      Emily Williamson Plaque Campaign

      Emily Williamson Plaque Campaign

      9 months ago

      We only launched the page on Friday 6th August and we have hit 50% of our target already. Thank you so much to everyone who has supported us. We are not just commemorating an amazing woman, but also spreading the word about her work, which continues to this day.

      Share this update to help us raise more

    10 months ago

    Emily Williamson Plaque Campaign started crowdfunding

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    Page last updated on: 4/21/2022 09.43



    • Anonymous


      Dec 2, 2021


    • Chris Mills

      Chris Mills

      Nov 26, 2021


    • Dr Richard Twine

      Dr Richard Twine

      Nov 22, 2021

      Supporting this as a Lancaster resident, vegan and ecofeminist.


    • Dr Malcolm Ostermeyer

      Dr Malcolm Ostermeyer

      Nov 15, 2021


    • Kirstie


      Nov 14, 2021

      So pleased we are going to recognise this amazing woman and the legacy she left

    • Anonymous


      Nov 12, 2021


    • Anonymous


      Nov 12, 2021


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    Emily Williamson Plaque Campaign

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