THE 100th anniversary of the first women winning the right to vote in Britain was celebrated up and down the country on Tuesday.

Millicent Fawcett, who led the Suffragist movement and dedicated her life to gaining political equality for women, married Salisbury-born academic, statesman and economist Henry Fawcett in 1867, whose memory is preserved with a statue in Salisbury Market Place.

Millicent will become the first woman to have a statue in her memory erected in Parliament Square in London later this year.

The couple’s great, great, great niece is Nikki Miles, who lives in Salisbury and works at Bishop Wordsworth’s School as PA to headmaster Stuart Smallwood.

Nikki said: “Millicent believed in peaceful protest and persuasion to draw attention to their message rather than the more violent suffragettes and she campaigned tirelessly for the rights of women throughout her life.”

Henry supported Millicent and fought for equal political rights for women during his time as an MP.

Nikki said: “As a family, we are incredibly proud of the role Millicent played in securing the vote for women and are very much looking forward to seeing her statue unveiled later this year.”

The bronze statue, designed by Turner Prize winner Gillian Wearing, will show Fawcett at 50, when she became president of the National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies, which campaigned for extending the vote.

Jemima Olchawski, from the Fawcett Society, said: “The battles she fought for genuinely equal citizenship are still very relevant today.

“One hundred years on from some women securing the vote, women everywhere have been calling out discrimination and taking the fight forwards.”

As a suffragist rather than a suffragette, Fawcett campaigned using peaceful tactics, including non-violent demonstrations, petitions and the lobbying of MPs.

She died in 1929, a year after women were granted the vote on equal terms to men.

A talk on Millicent’s life will be held on March 13 at Salisbury Cathedral.

A blue plaque to commemorate her achievements has been unveiled at the couple’s former Cambridge home.