Mrs. Pankhurst, whose arrest under the “Cat-and-Mouse” Act was effected by the police amid riotous scenes at a suffragist meeting in Glasgow on Monday night, was removed to London yesterday and lodged in Holloway Prison. Arrangements had been made by the leaders of the militant suffragists in London to welcome her on her arrival, and, if possible, to rescue her from custody, but they were outwitted by the police. A party of women who travelled by the same train from Glasgow had the mortification of seeing her taken from the train at an unexpected stopping place without being able to leave it themselves, and the large crowd which awaited her arrival at Euston found that the elaborate police precautions taken there were merely a hoax to encourage the expectation that Mrs. Pankhurst would be brought to the terminus and divert attention from the prison for which she was bound.

The Glasgow police succeeded in getting Mrs. Pankhurst away without any demonstration. It was expected that she would be removed by the 10 o’clock train from the Central Station, and sympathizers gathered both at the police office and at the station. By drawing two lorries up against the women’s motor-cars at the former point, however, the police prevented any interference with the removal of the prisoner from their headquarters. Mrs. Pankhurst refused to walk from her cell, and she was accordingly strapped to a stretcher and carried to a motor-car, in which she was taken, not to the Central Station, but to Coatbridge, eight miles out of Glasgow, where the train was specially stopped and she was carried into it. Officers from Scotland Yard were in charge of her.


A number of suffragist women travelled from Glasgow in the same train as their leader, and these were joined at Carlisle by a further contingent from the north and by about a dozen who had travelled from London. By accident or by the design of the police – probably the latter – they were in the fore-part of the train, while Mrs. Pankhurst travelled in the last carriage. When the train passed Willisden without any sign of the police officers’ intentions the women concluded that it would go on to Euston, where a welcome had been organized. To their surprise, however, the express stopped specially at Loudoun-road Station. There the two carriages which they occupied came to a standstill in a tunnel and they were thus prevented from fulfilling their intention to rescue Mrs. Pankhurst. Their leader’s carriage had stopped at the platform, and looking out, they saw that she was being removed from the train. Some of the women tried to climb out of the window, but before they could do so the train had started again, and on their arrival at Euston they had to admit that they had been outwitted. The ruse of the police at Loudoun-road had been carefully arranged, over 100 police being on duty. Mrs. Pankhurst, who was in a state of collapse – she is understood to have fasted since her arrest – was lifted from the compartment and carried to a motor-car outside the station, and accompanied by another car containing detectives, was driven to Holloway Gaol.

Not more than 50 suffragists had gathered outside the prison. When Mrs. Pankhurst and her guardians arrived a half-hearted attempt was made to close round their motor-car. The police, however, were present in large numbers and had no difficulty in clearing the way for the car and for another containing additional officers from Scotland Yard which followed it. As the cars were being driven through the entrance gates a young woman forced her way through the police ranks and ran towards the first car with a dog-whip in her hand. She apparently meant to strike the detective who was sitting beside the driver. She was, however, caught by plain-clothes officers, who took the whip from her. The cheers with which Mrs. Pankhurst was received – and they were no way vigorous – were mingled with derisive shouts. Up to a late hour last night women pickets were on guard outside the prison gates.

The Times, 11 March 1914, page 5

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