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THOUGHTS ON WORLD BOOK DAY from BFWG Vice President, Rory Haigh:

World Book Day dates back to 1995 when UNESCO set it up on St George's Day, 23rd April, marking the anniversaries of the birth/death dates of Shakespeare, Cervantes, and other famous writers. However, there has been a tradition in Catalonia since 1926 that on St George's Day - The Day of the Rose - gifts of books or roses have been exchanged. The UK and Spain are closely connected in thought here, but we have seen fit to move our World Book Day to the first Thursday in March, to avoid the established international date of 23 April as it "clashed" with St George's Day and might coincide with schools' Easter holidays. My personal view is that this is misguided, and has not raised the profile of World Book Day in the UK: we should either be part of an International / World Book Day or we have our own British Book Day. We will be sending this joint press release with IFUW ahead of World Book Day.

Vivyenne Rubinstein's Obituaries

Vivyenne's Obituary by Catherine Rubinstein

Vivyenne's Obituary by Nancy Catchpole

Vivyenne's Obituary by Cynthia Richmond

Vivyenne's Obituary by Margaret Roake

Vivyenne's Obituary by Anne Harrison

With Princess Alexandra 1957

With Princess Alexandra 1957

L to R: Nancy Edwards, Margaret Roake, Vivyenne Rubinstein, Cynthia Richmond

L to R: Nancy Edwards, Margaret Roake, Vivyenne Rubinstein, Cynthia Richmond

On Wednesday 9th April, Downing Street confirmed that Basingstoke MP Maria Miller has resigned as Culture Secretary.

Maria MillerThe move followed a row over her expenses.

BFWG very much regrets the resignation of Maria Miller as Minister for women and equalities. She brought energy and commitment to her role as champion of women in politics and business. As a working mother she was very aware of the multiple demands made on women but encouraged them nevertheless to take up the challenges and ‘blow their own trumpet’. This was very evident when the representatives of the 6-O group of women’s organisations were invited to meet her in Round Table discussions in January 2013.

We also regret that this latest cabinet reshuffle has not addressed the gender balance in the present government. Women are still under-represented and only 3 female members in the cabinet is risible.This present position does not reflect the reality when 52% of the world population are women. Women in the UK deserve better than successive ministers for women whose role is seen as an add-on to their other responsibilities.

We welcome Ms. Morgan to the post and wish her well in her new role. We trust that as member of the Treasury team she will be well aware of the economic and financial problems women face e.g. the considerable gender pay gap for work of equal value, when they wish improve their own lives and that of their families and make a difference in public life

Gabrielle Suff
VP Programme & Public Relations

 http://www.theguardian.com/news/datablog/2014/apr/09/uk-seventh-worst-eu-cabinet-minister-gender-balance