Hundreds of women are expected to take to the streets of Nottingham City Centre on Saturday 27 November for Reclaim the Night.
Reclaim the Night is a protest demanding an end to violence and harassment against women and girls, and raising awareness of the need for safety at night for everyone.
Marchers will gather outside Blend Café in Sneinton Market, then stomp, sing, drum, dance and shout their way through the city centre.
The march will end in a rally at NTU’s Dryden Centre at approximately 7:45pm.
Speakers at the rally will include Nadia Whittome (MP for Nottingham East), Ife Oyedeji (Survivor and President of the University of Nottingham’s feminists society), representatives from local women’s organisations, and more.
Reclaim The Night has a long history; the marches started in the UK in 1977 when torchlit processions were held in cities across the country.
In Leeds, women were particularly angered by the response to serial murders by ‘the Yorkshire Ripper’ who sexually attacked and murdered thirteen women.
The police response to these murders seemed slow, and women were told not to go out at night. This effectively put them under curfew, and put the onus of the crimes on innocent women rather than on the perpetrator.
Over the years the marches have evolved to focus on rape, sexual assault and male violence against women generally.
Marchers demand that women should feel safe walking the streets of their own cities, and resist the culture of victim-blaming those who are subjected to gender-based violence, sexual assault, harassment and rape.
On the streets, women and girls experience misogynistic, gender-based abuse, harassment and unwanted attention from men all the time.
A 2021 investigation by UN Women UK found that 71% of women of all ages in the UK have experienced some form of sexual harassment in a public space. Only 3% of the 18-24 year-olds surveyed reported that they had never experienced any of the listed forms of sexual harassment.
Reclaim the Night is a women-only march, carrying on a decades-old tradition of women reclaiming their streets.
But the fight against gender-based violence is for everyone. Male allies are welcome to come to the rally at the end of the march, which will be taking place at NTU’s Dryden Centre at approximately 7:45pm.
Representatives from White Ribbon, a campaign for men who are against violence towards women and girls, will be there to talk to any men who want to learn more about this important cause.