Ellen Malos is one of the founding figures of the Bristol Women’s Liberation Movement. If asked, she will fondly tell you the ‘5 minute story’. This is the story where she and her friend Lee had organised a meeting to discuss women’s issues in Bristol in 1969 before the movement had really kicked off.
The meeting started at 7pm and by 7.25 no one had turned up. Lee then said to Ellen, ‘come on, let’s go to the pub,’ and Ellen said ‘let’s just wait five minutes.’ And sure enough, in the five minutes that followed, Monica Sjoo and Pat VT West, both of whom were single mothers at the time, turned up and they had a meeting. The rest, as they say, is history.
In this excerpt we asked Ellen why she thought the cultural achievements of the WLM are often overlooked in histories of the movement. This is her reply: