She was born on 3 April 1853 in Bloomsbury, the daughter of Alfred Barrett, Governor of Richmond College 1858-68. She first met her husband, Hugh Price Hughes, when he was a student at the college. She was a pupil at Laleham School and acknowledged the influence of the headmistress, Hannah Pipe. Her husband always stressed the importance of her partnership and support in his ministry, not least in conceiving and bringing into existence a Sisterhood within the West London Mission, offering opportunities for women in the Church to serve the needs of the disadvantaged and ostracized sections of society. J.Scott Lidgett's verdict was that, while being a moderating influence on her excitable husband, she gave practical support to his platform oratory which perpetuated his influence. Following his early death in 1902, she continued to be actively involved in the work of the Mission, especially through her leadership of the 'Sisters of the People'. Despite distancing herself from the more extreme aspects of the suffragette movement, she played an active part in advancing the status of women in society and Church, was one of the first women elected to the WM Conference in 1911 and was the first woman to address that bastion of male supremacy. She received a CBE in 1938, published her memoirs in 1945 and died on 13 January 1948.
Entry written by: JAV
Comment on this entry