1871 – splits started to occur in the women’s suffrage movement. Manchester decided all suffrage groups should band together with their HQ in Manchester, with their leader to be Jacob Bright, Radical-Liberal MP, a pioneer for women’s suffrage and whom had influence that no woman enjoyed. But London were not keen to be ruled by Manchester or to have a man as their leader.
Another problem was party politics. Many suffragists felt the natural party of protest was the Radical-Liberals. But many women had an allegiance to the Conservatives. Others were dubious about both parties having witnessed the disappointments from politicians of all persuasions thus far. They put forward the case for the cause not allying itself to any party. These splits led women to leave their original suffrage society to set up rival groups formed of women who shared the same party political beliefs.
Such splits slowed progress. It was the start of the doldrum years for Votes for Women.