Co-op has stepped in with a funding boost for a Manchester museum which had been broken into twice in the last week.
Volunteers at the Pankhurst Centre had said repairs and much-needed security would “cost thousands” and that it was already “struggling for survival” when Co-op stepped in with a £10,000 donation. The funding boost will now enable repairs to be made to the Nelson Street museum’s broken windows and doors, as well as the necessary security improvements. This news comes as the Pankhurst Trust prepares to celebrate the anniversary of the birth of the suffragette movement on 10 October, which was founded in 1903.
Francesca Raine, Fundraising and Development Manager, Pankhurst Trust, said: “We are absolutely over-joyed and blown away by the support – everyone connected to the museum was heartbroken that the Pankhurst Centre, which symbolises so much in the campaign for women’s equality, should suffer such a set-back. However, this show of support from the Co-op means so much, it really has made a difference – not only can we complete the urgent work, but it has given all at the Centre a much needed boost ahead of our upcoming events and celebrations this week. We still have a lot of work ahead of us to ensure the continued survival of the Pankhurst Centre, but have been so encouraged by the love that has been shown and we extend a huge thank you to all that have reached out to offer their support.”
Andrew Lofty, Co-op’s Construction and Property Commercial Director, said: “Since our very beginnings inclusivity and diversity have been at the very core of the Co-op. Equal voting rights for women have existed at the Co-op since it began in 1844, and we felt that we could not sit back when an inspirational museum in our home city which celebrates equality needed help. We are pleased that our ‘vote’ of confidence in the Pankhurst Centre will enable it to complete the essential repairs needed and look forward again to the future.”
The Pankhurst Centre is a site of historical significance as the home of Emmeline Pankhurst, and her family, who led the suffragette campaign for Votes for Women. It is the place where the first meeting of the Women’s Social and Political Union was held. The Pankhurst Centre receives no public funding and relies on voluntary work, donations and small grants. The Pankhurst Trust’s long term vision for the Pankhurst Centre is for it to be fully restored and transformed into a museum of world-class standing, for further information visit www.pankhursttrust.org
Those wishing to support the Pankhurst Centre can do so at https://www.justgiving.com/