We are pleased to announce that 12 year old twin sisters Isabel (Izzy) and Sophia Kilburn have become our most recent Child Ambassadors. They live in Ovingdean and attend Brighton College Prep School. The girls love music and are accomplished young
sportswomen. Izzy focusses on hockey, while Sophia prefers netball and, in particular, cricket. Sophia plays cricket for the Brighton College boys first team.
The sisters are seasoned campaigners, with a particular interest in commemorating the lives of women who have no local memorial. While working on a school project about the Victorians, they came across tombstones in their local graveyard for Helena Normanton and Sophia Jex-Blake, inspirational women who fought to allow women to practice Law and Medicine.
The girls thought it odd that Helena and Sophia were not commemorated in the city. They were surprised to discover that less than a quarter of Brighton’s blue plaques commemorate women and that some of these only refer to women as “wife”, “daughter” or “mistress” of men.
The sisters began a local campaign for plaques for Helena Normanton and Sophia Jex-Blake, and were delighted that their applications received approval from the Council. They sought the support of Jean Calder, the Chair of our Appeal, and so learned about Mary Clarke, another inspirational ‘forgotten’ woman.
They are now enthusiastic Child Ambassadors and are excited and proud to be involved in fundraising for, and promoting, the Mary Clarke Statue Appeal. Meanwhile, they plan to unveil the blue plaque for Helena Normanton in 2022, the 100 year anniversary of her admission to the bar.
Izzy said: “Mary Clarke did so much for women’s rights – the least we can do is honour her with a statue. It will be educational for Brighton & Hove school children, both boys and girls, to learn more about her.”
Sophia said: “It has been so interesting to learn about the inspiring Mary Clarke and the sacrifice she made over a hundred years ago. It helped open up so many opportunities – all of us girls and women owe her so much!”
Jean Calder said: “ We are so pleased that Sophia and Isabel have joined the Appeal as Child Ambassadors. We are full of admiration for their plaque campaign and are sure that everyone involved in the Mary Clarke Statue Appeal will be cheering them on when the plaque for Helena Normanton is unveiled later this year. In the meanwhile, we hope to harness their commitment, energy and enthusiasm in our campaign for Mary’s statue.”