INSPIRATIONAL women have been celebrated at a public display in Hillmorton to mark International Women’s Day (Wednesday March 8).
The display at The Friendly Bench in High Street, organised by volunteers from Hillmorton and East Rugby Together Community Group (HEaRT), included personal reflections on friends, family members and famous figures.
Hetty Cook, six, a pupil at Eastlands Primary School, wrote about her teacher, Mrs Vikmanis, who she said “is the kindest person I know”, adding: “She makes me feel happy whenever I see her.”
Hetty’s mum, Leona Dominy, added: “It’s so important to say these things out loud about the inspiring women we meet every day. We often think it, but when you say it out loud you really feel it.”
Other contributors included Anglo-Hispanic Brit and Hillmorton resident Sue Morón, who encouraged people to think not so much about famous women but to look closer to home.
She said: “Stop a moment and think of the women who inspired you to be your best, who unknowingly provided formative role models, who regularly impress you with their common sense and the small gestures that bring you joy.”
Vivienne Hayes MBE, Chief Executive of the Women’s Resource Centre in London, named her inspirational woman as Audre Lorde, the black feminist and human rights author whose work is ‘beautiful and radical’.
She added that many women inspire her, including “the women I work with in the struggle to maintain the rights we are still clinging on to, and my mum without whom I would not be the warrior I am today. Women are strong and amazing.”
Another young resident chose her Auntie Meg, “because she is in the Panto, and she is a good aunty”.
Hillmorton’s councillors also put pen to paper, with Couns Yousef Dahmash, Adam Daly and Ian Picker writing a poem entitled the Grocer’s Ferrous Daughter, while Coun Kathryn Lawrence chose Florence Nightingale.
Coun Lawrence added: “International Women’s Day is an opportunity to remember the women who have led the way, but also all those who work quietly behind the scenes.”
Jill Dwyer, Chair of HEaRT, said: “We have loved reading and putting on display these wonderful contributions. What a great way to celebrate the work, support, friendship and love of women everywhere.”
The display will remain at The Friendly Bench until Saturday (March 11).
Installed in 2020, The Friendly Bench is a community seating area and garden which helps tackle loneliness and isolation, surrounded by floral displays tended by volunteers from HEaRT.