Rouse, Ye Women is the story of the 10-week strike in 1910 by women chain makers in the Midlands, led by the inspirational Mary Macarthur, an indefatigable fighter who demanded better wages and a minimum wage in the industry.
Writer and performer Neil Gore said, ‘Mary Macarthur led the fight to draw public attention to the plight of sweated labour, and in particular women workers at the turn of the last century. Our projects are about people who should be revered and celebrated, but are often forgotten figures of history, largely because their achievements are scorned by the rich and powerful in society.’
Mary Macarthur was also a defiant trade union leader, determined to win better prospects in life for people through education and self-improvement. “Her story, and the story of the women who risked what little they earned from their work to go on strike, needs to be told,” said Gore. “It has so many relevant connections with working conditions that so many workers in poorly paid jobs are confronted with today. We felt it was time that her story should be told – to show people that these struggles have been fought and won in the past.”
Rouse, Ye Women is on at Greenwich Theatre, Croooms Hill, Greenwich, SE10 on February 19th. Admission: £16. Phone: 020 8858 7755