Statue Unveiled For Accessible Belper Founder
On Sunday 16 September Accessible Belper’s Siobhan Fennel was presented with a statue of herself as part of the national ‘put her forward’ campaign.
The unveiling, which took place at No28, celebrated Siobhan Fennell for her extensive work in the community. She was chosen out of hundreds of nominations to be one of the 25 Most Inspirational Women in the UK.
Siobhan is one of the key contributors behind the voluntary organisation Accessible Belper and she has campaigned strongly for accessibility, inclusion and awareness. Accessible Belper aims to make the town of Belper in Derbyshire accessible for as many people as possible and her efforts were instrumental in Belper winning the “Most accessible town in Derbyshire” award.
Siobhan campaigns for accessibility and inclusion by writing and presenting training opportunities to individuals, groups and businesses; working with local schools; and by developing a business survey which helps shops and services ensure their premises and staff can provide for all their customers, whatever their needs.
On receiving the award Siobhan said: “News of the statue was a complete shock. The putherforward project is so worthwhile though. I can’t believe that there are more statues of goats in this country than women! It is incredibly humbling to be chosen as one of the 25 most inspiring women in the UK. Although I don’t run Accessible Belper for recognition this will really re-energise me. What a privilege!”
Siobhan’s ethos in establishing Accessible Belper comes directly from her own experience as a quadriplegic woman – that by raising awareness we can increase understanding, which can then leads to accessibility for all.
put her forward campaign
Back in the summer the artists’ group non zero one ran a public call-out asking people to ‘put her forward’ – to nominate living women that deserve recognition for what they do and for the positive impact they have had on people around them.
From hundreds of nominations, 25 women were invited to be 3D-scanned and 3D-printed into statues, and now they will be unveiled one-by-one as part of Heritage Open Days, the country’s largest festival of history and culture.
Non zero one noted back when the campaign was launched that: “there are 925 public statues in the UK. 158 of these are women, and of these only 25 are of non-mythical, non-royal women. There are more statues of people called John. There are more statues of goats…your nominations aim to double the statues of non-mythical, non-royal women in England by September 2018.”
Each new statue was then unveiled at locations across England during Heritage Open Day weekends of 6th-9thand 13th-16thSeptember.
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