A CAMPAIGN group fundraising to build a statue of Newport's hometown heroine Lady Rhondda - backed by the Argus - has launched a new scheme to inspire young women to become the leaders of tomorrow.

The Monumental Welsh Women group was set up in 2019 to raise money for statues of five of the most influential female figures in Wales' history, including suffragette Landy Rhondda, and has now launched a new Girlguiding challenge badge as part of the drive.

The unofficial badge requires girls to carry out one task for each of the five women in the campaign - Lady Rhondda, Betty Campbell, Cranogwen, Elizabeth Andrews, and Elaine Morgan - plus another of their own choice, either individually or as a unit. Each badge costs £1.50.

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Activities related to Lady Rhondda include making a 'Votes for Women' sash, creating the front cover of your own magazine, designing a new five-point charter, or writing a business plan.

Born Margaret Haig Mackworth, Lady Rhondda spent her life and fortune campaigning for women’s rights. She was a suffragette and went to prison for trying to blow up a post box in Risca Road.

During the First World War she worked for the government and survived the sinking of the Lusitania, and after the conflict set up the magazine Time and Tide featuring news, reviews, and literature. She wrote several books, including her autobiography.

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Lady Rhondda

Betty Campbell was Wales' first black headteacher. In 2018 she won a poll by BBC Wales for the first statue of a women in Wales, which will be unveiled in Central Square, Cardiff in 2021/22.

If she is chosen, the activities include drawing a picture of yourself achieving your goals, teaching someone else a skill, reading a book written by a black or minority ethnic author about a famous person of colour, or writing an election manifesto leaflet for yourself.

Cranogwen, whose real name was Sarah Jane Rees, was a writer, teacher, preacher and sailor. She challenged what was expected of Victorian women to become a master mariner, on cargo ships and gained a master mariner’s certificate, which allowed her to command a ship in any part of the world.


Activities connected to her include reciting a poem to someone, designing an ‘around the world’ trip by boat, writing a poem and sign it with your ‘Bardic’ name, or learning five sailing knots.

Elizabeth Andrews was born into a poor mining family in Hirwaun, in the Cynon Valley and had to leave school at 13 to help make ends meet, but she attended evening classes and won prizes for her essays.

Becoming the first Labour Party Women’s Organiser for Wales, she set up many groups, became a Welsh to English translator and was one of the first female magistrates.

Activities connected to her include tidying your bedroom and helping wash up, giving a five-to-ten-minute talk on something you are passionate about, buying two or more newspapers or accessing them online, or chairing an event for friends.

Elaine Morgan was a TV writer and evolutionary theorist, who won a scholarship to Oxford University.

Activities connected to her include making a television out of a cardboard box, tracing your family tree, adapting a story or fairy tale into a radio play, or watching Elaine Morgan’s TED Talk.

participants are also required to find their own monumental woman and make a maquette - a small model or sketch for a larger sculpture or statue.

For more information, statueforladyrhondda@gmail.com.

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