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A woman wears a hat shaped like the Palace of Westminster and clothes in the suffragette colours of green, white and violet - standing for Give Women Votes - as she marches in the 'Processions' women's march in London, Britain, June 10, 2018. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls

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More than 100,000 women marched in the U.K. to celebrate 100 years of suffrage

June 11, 2018

Wearing the suffragette colors of violet, white and green, around 100,000 women marched in cities across the U.K. to celebrate the centenary of women’s right to vote.

According to The Guardian, the marches took place in London, Belfast, Cardiff and Edinburgh — the capital cities of England, Northern Ireland, Wales, and Scotland. The marchers were commemorating both the mass marches staged by early women’s rights activists and the activists’ ultimate victory. In 1918, after fierce and tireless campaigning by the suffragists and suffragettes, Britain’s parliament signed the Representation of the People Act, which granted the right to vote to women over 30 who met certain property requirements — an important step toward universal suffrage.

In London, marchers filled the street of Pall Mall, where suffragettes once smashed windows to force officials to reckon with their cause. On Sunday, campaigners chanted “Equal seats, equal voices” — a demand for equal representation in Parliament. In Edinburgh, participants advocated for the rights of women prisoners. The procession was laden with particular significance in Belfast, where marchers were joined by pro-choice advocates from the Republic of Ireland, which voted last month to overturn its abortion ban.

Women walk together dressed in the Suffragette colors of green, white and violet to celebrate a hundred years since women won the right to vote in central London on June 10, 2018. (DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images)

According to the BBC, the march was organized by 14-18 Now, an art program that seeks to connect people to the First World War, and Artichoke, which works with artists to create public artworks.

One participant in the London march, Joanne Johnson, told the BBC that she was there to “honor the women that fought for our right to vote.”

That fight is still ongoing, Johnson added. “The suffragettes started this,” she said, “but we still don’t get equal pay, even in 2018.” For more on the story and to see highlights from the marches, watch the video below.

Read more at The Guardian and the BBC.

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