In 2019 discussions began with Epsom Bid who were looking for help with an event to unveil a statue of Emily Davison in Epsom town centre. Two years later, following the pandemic that caused havoc with groups of people mingling, we were given the good news to ahead with the work in Spring 2021.
On 4th June 1913, Emily Wilding Davison was struck by King George V’s horse Anmer during the running of the Epsom Derby. She died of her injuries four days later. As one of the most important figures in Epsom’s history, the statue was commissioned to commemorate the role Emily played in gaining votes for women, while inspiring future generations.
This significant piece of artwork has been the result of a campaign by the Emily Davison Memorial Project (EDMP), a group of passionate local volunteers who campaigned for years to raise enough funds to make their vision a reality.
With very little PR experience in their team, the committee approached The Oracle Group to help them ensure that this event would hit national news, determined to ensure that both Epsom and Emily hit the news agenda.
As the statue reveal got closer, with the plan to unveil Emily on the date of her death, 8th June, Oracle enabled a small team to work on contacting as many broadcast, national and local press to come and engage in this slice of Epsom’s history.
The past year had seen statues being torn down across the world so this was a prime time to send out a positive statue story. The narrative for Emily was nothing but good news, unveiling a sculpture that stands for women, equality and passion, and will inspire generations of people to visit and pause to stop, look and think.
With such a considerable back story for Oracle to work with, this was a fantastic opportunity to engage with the press. As the event drew near, we had TV crews, national papers, photographers, social media channels and local radios station chomping at the bit to attend.
The morning of the unveil was a perfect summer’s day but quite frenetic with Channel 5, ITV and BBC all wanting their piece of the action. With a little patience and some clever engineering, every crew left with the material that they needed to air / print / share the story.
For 24 hours Emily Wilding Davison, again had her moment of fame and for Oracle we were honoured to have been a part of such project, and to work with such a passionate group of people who were prepared to give up their time for the good of others.