Alice Cliff Scatcherd

Alice Cliff Scatcherd (1842–1906) was an early British suffragist who in 1889 founded the Women's Franchise League, with Harriet McIlquham, Ursula Bright, Emmeline Pankhurst, Richard Pankhurst and Elizabeth Clarke Wolstenholme Elmy.

Scatcherd was born in Wortley and was a lifelong campaigner for women's rights who lived much of her life in Morley, West Yorkshire including in Morley Hall. Scatcherd donated Scatcherd Park to the town.

Suffragist career

She was secretary for the Leeds branch of the National Society for Women's Suffrage (NSWS).

Scatcherd was active in speaking out at events in the 1870s as typified by an example on 24 March 1877, when she appeared alongside Lydia Becker and other early suffragettes to discuss women's access to the vote in Macclesfield. The chairman, J. W. White, addressed the meeting saying that "it appeared somewhat strange that whereas the British Parliament had been engaged from time to time for many years back in conferring rights and removing disabilities, there should still exist any large and intelligent section of society outside the electoral community. They had not yet found any good reason given for excluding from parliamentary suffrage women who had already voted in municipal and school board elections; therefore they intended to reiterate their demands until they were conceded". Scatcherd was supported by Henry Birchenough in seconding the first resolution which was moved by Joshua Oldfield Nicholson.

The Alice Cliff Scatcherd scrapbooks on microfilm (MIC Y B SCA) comprise letters, photos and letterpress relating to the national suffrage campaign, politics, education and Morley civic life and are held at Morley Library.


Scatcherd was married to Oliver Scatcherd, a textile factory owner and Mayor of Morley. Scatcherd was critical of the existing nature of marriage and refused to attend wedding services in established churches where women took a vow of obedience to men. She shocked late 19th Century conservative society by travelling Europe with her husband without a wedding ring.

Scatcherd is buried in St Mary in the Wood churchyard, Morley.