This Day In London’s History
1973: Women are admitted to the London Stock Exchange for the first time.
After 200 years of male exclusivity, including a period where “unsuitable facilities” were blamed for the men-only tradition, ten newly elected lady members of the London Stock Exchange were admitted to the institution on 26th March 1973.
However despite this landmark breakthrough for equality in the industry, which arrived after years of campaigning by women who worked in the financial sector, women were still not allowed onto the trading floor, at least initially. Although it didn’t take too long for this to be addressed, it was still a further 28 years before “the last bastion of misogyny” saw a woman in a senior post, when Clara Furse took over as Chief Executive in 2001.
In 1973, when women were first admitted to the Stock Exchange, the premises on Threadneedle Street were relatively new, having only been opened one year earlier. Still, a few decades later the Stock Exchange moved premises again in 2004, taking up residence this time in the relatively modern surroundings of the recently revamped Paternoster Square, close to St. Paul’s Cathedral.
One Thing You Must Do In London This Week
Talking of St. Paul’s, this week is your last chance to visit the Slave Britain photo exhibition at the cathedral. As part of the commemoration of yesterday’s bicentennial anniversary of the abolition of the slave trade, an exhibition that aims to “artfully document the ordinary lives and everyday locations caught up in trafficking and call for an end to this illegal 21st century trade” has been running for the last month and is due to close this Thursday. The exhibition is technically free, but there is an annoying entry charge of £9.50 to the cathedral that may apply – full details are available here. (Be careful about when you choose to visit though, as the St. Paul’s website implies that the exhibition will not be open this Wednesday.)
Ladies’ toilet sign picture taken from Leo Reynold’s Flickr photostream under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-Sharealike 2.0 licence.