New Zealand High Commissioner to unveil Centenary plaque dedicated to Sir John Hall

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His Excellency the Right Honourable Sir Lockwood Smith KNZM PhD, High Commissioner for New Zealand, is to unveil a Centenary plaque dedicated Sir John Hall, Premier of New Zealand.

Sir John Hall was born in Kingston upon Hull, in a building adjacent to Hull Central Library. He championed the rights of women in New Zealand and supported the cause of votes for women for over twenty years. In 1893 New Zealand became the first country in the world to give the vote to women, during Sir John Hall’s time as Premier.

The Lord Mayor of Kingston upon Hull, Councillor Mary Glew invited the Right Honourable Sir Lockwood Smith to the city to celebrate the life and work of Sir John Hall. The High Commissioner will unveil a plaque in his memory at Hull Central Library at 2.15pm on Wednesday 20 May. The Lord Mayor will give a short speech on the life and works of Sir John Hall.

A second plaque at the Library will also be unveiled at 2.30pm honouring Margaret Kissling (nee Moxon), followed by a short speech on her life by the Lord Mayor. Margaret was a teacher and missionary; a Hull born pioneering female educator of children in Sierra Leone and New Zealand.

These Centenary plaques are two of a number of new plaques at various locations across the city being unveiled by the Lord Mayor to commemorate people from Hull that have made a significant difference nationally or internationally.

Being unveiled in the centenary year of the office of Lord Mayor in the city, they will be part of a series of plaques that will form a city-wide trail of inspirational people who were born or lived in Hull.

The trail will tell important stories about the city’s historical figures that will inspire people in the present day. The people chosen for commemoration are pioneers, campaigners and ground-breakers, who come from Kingston upon Hull but were influential in the city and across the world.

The Lord Mayor, Councillor Mary Glew said:

There are so many truly inspirational and influential people from this city that we want to celebrate for their impact on people’s lives. I’m delighted that the High Commissioner of New Zealand is coming to our city to remember Sir John Hall and Margaret Kissling and their internationally significant work.

There are a number of other heritage plaques across Hull, each telling their own story about the city’s heritage. The Centenary plaques differ in that they have an interactive feature for the modern day. A new App is in development and in the future people with a smart phone or smart device will be able to download the App to find out more about the person being commemorated.