Diversity of gender in the workplace seems a very current topic and one that did not trouble those working in the City more than 50 years ago - a time when gender work roles were rather more specific with women taking the lower paid and less prestigious work without seeming complaint. But the role of women in work has not always been subsidiary. A new outdoor exhibition in the City of London called City Women in the 18th Century delves into that period of the great rise in the City's international supremacy. Here we have displayed via their business cards the shops and ateliers of many women working in and around Cheapside, St Paul's and Newgate Street. Not only did they produce the exquisite clothes, hats, fans and gloves but they ran the businesses themselves as the cards show. Further (and against the predominant view that Livery Companies have been the preserve of men) many of these women were Liverymen in their own right. The work has been researched by curator Dr Amy Erickson of Cambridge University and the website http://citywomen.hist.cam.ac.uk/ gives further details. However it is a delight to wander the streets of the City to see the boards telling about these female entrepreneurs of the past. I was pleased to be interviewed and share ideas on how well the modern Livery Companies and City accept women in their midst on this YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iJ5Xwbu1A1g
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