Rooms of Our Own : Oral History Interviews

The Rooms of Our Own project’s aim was to reveal the hidden ‘herstory’ of the Pankhurst Centre from the 1970s to 2014.

As well as saving the at-risk paper archive which offers a rich account of women’s activism in the region, documenting the activities of the women who fought to save the building – the birth place of the suffragette movement – we wanted to collect women’s stories in their own words through a series of oral history interviews.

At the end of 2021 young volunteers were trained by Historian Dr Michala Hulme in the practice of oral history interviews. In 2022 they began to collect the oral history interviews of eight women involved in the fundraising, building and management of the Pankhurst Centre.

You can listen to short excerpts of the interviews below. 

If you would like to listen to the full oral history interview you can do so through the Archives+ collection at Manchester Central Library. To arrange to visit Archives+ and listen to the oral history interviews visit the Manchester Archives here. 

The collection of the oral history interviews is very important to ensure the women involved in the Pankhurst Trust’s stories are recorded in their own words. Their contributions to the landscape of women’s heritage in the region should be celebrated. 


Helen Pankhurst CBE 
Patron of the Pankhurst Trust and Great-Granddaughter of Emmeline Pankhurst 

Linda Carver, Julie Woodruff and Margaret Banton 
Hired to help work on the construction of the building

Janet Pickering 
Current Pankhurst Trust Volunteer and Trustee

Karen Clarke
Chair of the Pankhurst Trust (1984 – 1999)

Sarah Vince 
Pankhurst Centre Tourism Officer (1990 – 1993)

Dr Stella Butler 
Secretary of the Pankhurst Trust (1984 – 1999)