Allison Vale's 'A Woman Lived Here' is an alternative to the Blue Plaque Guide that drags the scheme into the twenty-first century by showing where notable women not currently recognised by the guide lived and telling us something about their lives.
'A pretty awesome present for the feminist in your life' - Caroline Criado Perez, OBE, author of Do It Like a Woman
At the last count, the Blue Plaque Guide honours 903 Londoners, and a walking tour of these sites brings to life the London of a bygone era. But only 111 of these blue plaques commemorate women.
Over the centuries, London has been home to thousands of truly remarkable women who have made significant and lasting impacts on every aspect of modern life: from politics and social reform, to the Arts, medicine, science, technology and sport. Many of those women went largely unnoticed, even during their own lifetimes, going about their lives quietly but with courage, conviction, skill and compassion. Others were fearless, strident trail-blazers. Many lived in an era when their achievements were given a male name, clouding the capabilities of women in any field outside of the home or field.
A Woman Lived Here shines a spotlight on some of these forgotten women to redress the balance. The stories on these pages commemorate some of the most remarkable of London's women, who set out to make their world a little richer, and in doing so, left an indelible mark on ours. It was published in 2018 by Little, Brown imprint Robinson.
Allison Vale has written more than a dozen books, many of which have indulged a fascination with the obscured lives of women in British history, such as The Lost Art of Being a Lady, How to Push a Perambulator and Amelia Dyer: Angel Maker, a biography of the murderous, thirty-year career of Britain's most prolific baby farmer. Her alternative
She lives near Bristol with her husband, their two children and an unruly dog named Douglas.