It’s 100 years since property-owning women over the age of 30 won the right to vote in the UK, and more than a century since the first International Women’s Day.

In this special year the day falls on Thursday, March 8, and the Huddersfield area has a variety of events to mark the occasion.

There’s live entertainment, the chance to learn about celebrated women from the past, a dance event and workshops for young women and girls. Not all are on March 8, but all are being held in the spirit of the day.

Huddersfield Girl Geeks: Love Science, Thursday, March 8, Huddersfield Library

The Girl Geeks work to promote STEM subjects among girls and young women and are hosting an event from 1pm until 6.30pm. The afternoon of science sessions, offering the chance to conduct experiments, is divided into three age groups – Little Miss Inventor for the under fives from 1pm; Ada Twist Scientist from 3pm for girls aged five to 11; and Great Women of Science from 5pm for 11 to 16-year-olds. Book a free place from

Professor Jessica Malay on Lady Anne Clifford, Heritage Quay, Thursday, March 8.

The University of Huddersfield Professor examines the life of a strong and troublesome 17th century Yorkshirewoman in a talk from noon until 1pm. It’s free but places need to be booked through the Huddersfield Literature Festival website

University of Huddersfield researcher Dr Jessica Malay

Ms Shakespeare Through Time, Thursday, March 8.

Stories inspired by women from Yorkshire’s past are re-imagined by local writers to celebrate Women’s Day. Last year the Ms Shakespeare Project launched a competition to invite writers to submit a sample of their work. Three have been chosen to create a 2,000-word monologue based on the narratives of working women in the region. This event starts at 7pm in The Taproom of Magic Rock Brewing, Willow Lane. Also part of the Huddersfield Literature Festival, there’s free entry.

Music and spoken word, Northern Quarter, Huddersfield, Friday, March 9.

An evening of entertainment at the Wood Street venue, starting 6.30pm, will raise funds for the Huddersfield Women’s Centre.

Annapurna Indian Dance, Victoria Theatre, Halifax, Saturday, March 10.

An afternoon of dance, music and storytelling hosted by the local Annapurna Dancers with the aim of bringing together women from different communities.

Entry is free. The event is from 12.30pm until 3pm.

Huddersfield Literature Festival

Later in March, during the Huddersfield Literature Festival , the great-granddaughter of suffragette leader Emmeline Pankhurst, Helen Pankhurst, will be appearing at Huddersfield Library in conversation with local author Joanne Harris. The event, on Saturday, March 17, celebrates the publication of Helen’s new book Deeds Not Words, which charts how women’s lives have changed over the past century. For details visit

Helen Pankhurst, great-granddaughter of suffragette leader Emmeline Pankhurst is appearing in Huddersfield Literature Festival 2018

The History of International Women’s Day.

1909: The first National Woman’s Day was observed in the United States on February 28. The Socialist Party of America designated this day in honour of the 1908 garment workers’ strike in New York, where women protested against working conditions.

1910: The Socialist International (a world-wide organisations of socialist parties), meeting in Copenhagen, established a Women’s Day, international in character, to honour the movement for women’s rights and to build support for achieving universal suffrage for women. The proposal was greeted with unanimous approval by the conference of over 100 women from 17 countries, which included the first three women elected to the Finnish Parliament.

1911: As a result of the Copenhagen initiative, International Women’s Day was marked for the first time on March 19 in Austria, Denmark, Germany and Switzerland, where more than one million women and men attended rallies. In addition to the right to vote and to hold public office, they demanded women’s rights to work, to vocational training and to an end to discrimination on the job.