Rooms Of Our Own

A project to reveal the hidden ‘herstory’ of the Pankhurst Centre at Manchester Histories' brand new permanent space at Manchester Central Library

By Karen Shannon · February 16, 2023

October 11 2022 – January 3 2023

We were delighted to partner with The Pankhurst Trust for the first exhibition in the Manchester Histories Hub – Rooms of Our Own

Rooms of Our Own was a National Lottery Heritage Funded project to reveal the hidden ‘herstory’ of the Pankhurst Trust. The exhibition displayed the Pankhurst Trust’s organisational archive, now preserved for the public to access for the first time in Archives+. It also premiered a film Is the Fight Over? made by young people in response to the archive. You can also view the film below, or on our YouTube Channel.


Although now recognised internationally as a site of historic importance, as the former home of Emmeline Pankhurst and the place from where the suffragette movement was born, for many years the Pankhurst Centre’s significance was overlooked. It was thanks to women’s activism that the quest began in the 1970s to save the building, which faced the very real threat of demolition in 1978. This hard-fought campaign, and the vision that led to the creation of a museum and feminist hub, has never been fully explore until now.

The key focus of Rooms of Our Own project was the Pankhurst Centre archive, with volunteers aged 18-25 working on the documents and photographs which already exist, as well as capturing the stories and voices of campaigners and project workers from the 1970s to 2014. You can listen to the oral history interviews here. As it progresses the project will use the archive to inspire creativity, including the making of original digital artwork, music and film.