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Memorial plaque to mark election of first woman MP - Jeremy Corbyn

Published 26/09/2015

Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn announced plans for the plaque
Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn announced plans for the plaque

A new memorial plaque will be erected to commemorate the election of the first woman MP, Irish republican Constance Markievicz, Jeremy Corbyn has announced.

Countess Markievicz, who played a major role in the 1916 Easter Rising, was elected as a Sinn Fein MP in 1918 but did not take her seat.

Mr Corbyn said she was serving a jail sentence at Holloway Prison in his Islington North seat when she was elected.

"Our important footnote in history is that the first woman elected to Parliament came from Islington North," Mr Corbyn told the Labour women's conference.

"She was in Her Majesty's Prison Holloway at the time.

"It was, of course, Connie Markievicz who was elected as a Sinn Fein member for Dublin Central, the first woman elected to Parliament.

"She didn't want to take her seat and couldn't take her seat anyway.

"But I have been discussing this with women colleagues on Islington Council and when we rebuild our library next to the prison we are going to have a plaque, a memorial, up so that all the generations can understand the contribution that Connie Markiewicz and so many others made."

Mr Corbyn recently reiterated his support for a united Ireland, telling the New Statesman that it was "an aspiration that I have always gone along with".

Earlier this month shadow chancellor John McDonnell apologised "from the bottom of my heart" for the offence caused by calling for Irish republican terrorists to be honoured but suggested his comments may have helped the peace process.

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