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Not too many people know that 100 years ago there was a radical Punjabi Princess in East Anglia.

Princess Sophia Duleep Singh was a radical royal princess who used her money and social status to help bring in the Women’s Vote. 

Sophia Duleep Singh: Princess, Suffragette and Revolutionary, born in London, raised in East Anglia, 1876 – 1948. She was the daughter of Maharaja Duleep Singh and Maharani Bamba Muller, the granddaughter of Maharaja Ranjit Singh, Sher-e-Punjab, "Lion of Punjab" and the treasured Goddaughter of Queen Victoria.

In September 2018 a Princess Sophia Duleep Singh Roundtable Discussion took place at Ipswich Community Media and was attended by 8 women of South Asian and British heritage who explored in conversation women’s priorities and voices in communities and in public life.

The roundtable discussion was followed by two adventures. The first was to Chelmsford Records Office to a conference in honour of the Princess where we heard from women community organisers and activists for equality. The second outing was to The Houses of Parliament to celebrate officially the life and achievements of Princess Sophia Duleep Singh.

We gained funding from The Women's Centenary Fund and commissioned Artful Skecha, an artist based in Redhill, to work in Ipswich with South Asian women and children to design a public mural in homage to Princess Sophia Duleep Singh (1876 – 1948), a prominent suffragette who lived in Thetford, East Anglia.

Through this project we celebrate East Anglia's connection to the Women’s Centenary; hope to increase awareness of women's suffrage, promote women’s participation and relevance in British history as well as the strength of women's voices in communities and by the example of the life of Princess Sophia Duleep Singh, strongly encourage women to participate in civic life and politics.

First, second and third generation British South Asian women took part in creative workshops at Guru Nanak Gurdwara Ipswich in December 2018, and we've asked Artful Skecha to take inspiration from the workshops to design and paint a mural in honour of Princess Sophia Duleep Singh. 

Volunteers who wish to take part helping to paint the mural are welcome to attend on Sunday 18th August and Saturday 24th August 2019 between 10am -5pm, please book through our eventbrite page.

"Make a solumn vow that you will always vote" Princess Sophia Duleep Singh

Princess Sophia Duleep Singh by Artful Skecha

Artful Skecha at the mural site on Foundry Lane, painting is due to start in mid-August 2019

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