Hilda Brackenbury

Hilda Brackenbury was born in 1832. She married General Charles Brackenbury, and gave birth to two daughters, Georgina Brackenbury and Marie Brackenbury. Brackenbury also had two sons who were both killed on active service. After the death of her husband she became a supporter of women's suffrage.

In 1907 Hilda and her two daughters joined the Women's Social and Political Union (WSPU). In February 1908, her two daughters, were arrested during a WSPU demonstration outside the House of Commons. Both were found guilty and sentenced to six weeks in Holloway Prison.

Christabel Pankhurst decided that the WSPU needed to intensify its window-breaking campaign. On 1st March, 1912, a group of suffragettes volunteered to take action in the West End of London. The Daily Graphic reported the following day: "The West End of London last night was the scene of an unexampled outrage on the part of militant suffragists.... Bands of women paraded Regent Street, Piccadilly, the Strand, Oxford Street and Bond Street, smashing windows with stones and hammers."

Mrs Brackenbury and her two daughters were both arrested for taking part in the demonstration. Hilda aged 79, was accused of breaking two windows in the United Service Institution in Whitehall. She served eight days on remand before being sentenced to 14 days in Holloway Prison.

Mrs Brackenbury's home at 2 Campden Hill Square, London, became known as "Mouse Castle" as members of the WSPU went there to recuperate after being released under the Cat & Mouse Act.

Hilda Brackenbury died in 1918.