Statue to honour Mudgee pioneer of Women’s Suffrage

The mother of suffrage in NSW will soon receive the recognition she deserves, with a statue set to be erected in her honour with some help from the NSW Government.

For years the Mudgee community has been fundraising to erect a life-size bronze statue of Louisa Lawson outside the former town hall, now Mudgee Library.

Member for the Dubbo electorate Dugald Saunders today announced the NSW Government has committed $11,300 towards the public art project.

“Louisa is best known as the mother of poet Henry Lawson, but she was a writer, publisher, printer, philanthropist and activist in her own right,” Mr Saunders said.

“Louisa gave women a voice through her newspaper Dawn, and she launched and was heavily involved in the campaign for women’s right to vote in NSW.

“For too long Louisa has been overshadowed by her famous son, but the people of the Mudgee have been determined to get her the recognition she deserves. I’m so proud to have been able to secure this funding to help make the project a reality.”

The project began as an initiative of the Rotary Club of Mudgee, but quickly captured the imagination of community, and the committee consists of both Rotary and non-Rotary members.

“It’s clear Louisa’s has inspired a lot of people, and this recognition is long overdue,” Mr Saunders said.

The statue will be sculpted by Margot Stephens, an internationally renowned artist who lives and works in Eurunderee, just minutes from where Louisa lived during her time in the region.

“I think Mudgee likes the idea of having a hero, especially in this time of disasters – bushfires, floods, the pandemic,” project director Chris Stephens said.

Mr Stephens thanked the NSW Government for its contribution to the more than $100,000 project.

“Thank you to everyone who has contributed to the fundraising efforts so far, including the Rotary Club of Mudgee and the statue committee,” he said.

“Our work is only half done, but everyone has put in amazing work to get us this far.”

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