Family remember Deputy Randall 100 years after she was elected as Guernsey's first female deputy

Guernsey's first female Deputy, Marie Louise Mansell Randall, is being honoured with a blue plaque at her first home in St Peter Port today (Wednesday 24 January) to mark 100 years since her election.Deputy Randall was 42 when she was appointed in January 1924 and served for 31 years, making her the only female member of the States for 24 of those 31 years.

This came 24 years before Jersey's first female Deputy, Ivy Forester, who was elected in 1945.

To mark the 100th anniversary of her election, Marie Randall's family have been sharing their memories of her.

Jenny Jee is the great niece of Marie Randall, and has traced her lineage back to Marie via her grandfather, Lieutenant Colonel Robert Randall, who was Marie's brother.

"We loved her. But not everyone in the family did, they were scared of her."

Jenny Jee's son Nic, says the family called Marie 'Aunty Totty', "I don't think we could pronounce [Marie] so we called her Aunty Totty".

Left to right: Shelaine Green, Women in Public Life, Nice Jee, Marie Randall's great great nephew, Jenny Jee, Marie's great niece . Credit: ITV Channel TV

Woman in Public Life nominated Marie for a Blue Plaque which is being unveiled by Deputy Bailiff, Jessica Roland, at the Deputy's childhood home, One St Julian's.

The plaque is the second to commemorate a woman in Guernsey, the first plaque was for Marie Ozanne who spoke up against the naziand there are currently 11 honouring men.

The plaque has been funded by Women in Public Life, along with Marie's family and donations from islanders.

Shelaine Green, Chair of Women in Public Life said: “Marie Randall was a pioneer, elected just four years after Nancy Astor first sat in the UK Parliament and 24 years before Jersey’s Ivy Forster. “It’s hard to believe that, 100 years after Marie was first elected, there are still onlyeight women among the 40 members of the States.

"We hope Marie’s story will inspire other Guernsey women to follow in her footsteps – and we’d of course be very happy to support them.”

Islanders in Guernsey who helped fund the plaque have been able to add a personal dedication.

One islander said: "The year Marie was elected, a ground-breaking moment in Guernsey politics. Guernsey women, over 30, had only secured the right to vote 4 years earlier so she was a remarkable pioneer."

Another said: "As a tribute to my Mum who has campaigned for women’s rights in her way and for my Dad who has supported her."

Deputy Randall, who was educated in The Ladies' College, volunteered as a member of the Voluntary Aid Detachment in World War 1 and nursed in Guernsey, Rouen and London.

She was made an MBE in 1954 retired from the States in 1955 and died in 1965.

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