Creating the Women's Equality Party

Discover how author Catherine Mayer founded the Women's Equality Party

By WOW - Women of the World Foundation

The WOW Foundation

The Women’s Equality Party was co-founded by author and journalist Catherine Mayer and broadcaster and author Sandi Toksvig after a fortuitous meeting at the 2015 WOW - Women of the World Festival in London.

Catherine Mayer co-founded the Women's Equality PartyWOW - Women of the World Foundation

A lookback at the Women's Equality Party's first year

Over the International Women's Day weekend, Catherine spoke at a WOW debate on politics and proposed the idea of funding a Women's Equality Party. Jude Kelly, the Founder of WOW mentioned that Sandi Toksvig too had the seed of an idea of such a political party. Catherine rung Sandi and immediately the pair agreed to work together. 

The first meeting of the emerging party took place at the site of its inception, the Southbank Centre. Over the coming weeks, the party agreed their core objectives and the party's strapline: "The Women's Equality Party needs you. But probably not as much as you need the Women's Equality Party". 

Sandi Toksvig at WOW London by Alice BoageyWOW - Women of the World Foundation

Sandi Toksvig's TED talk on The Women's Equality Party

What inspired you to found the Women’s Equality Party?

Nine million UK women choosing not to exercise their hard-won right to vote in Westminster elections, because they couldn’t see themselves or their interests reflected in the existing political parties. And frankly they had a point.

How did WOW help inspire you?

WOW has a huge significance for me, for the party, for my lovely and hilarious co-founder Sandi Toksvig. We are on the founding committee of WOW and every year since WOW started we’ve watched it generate a huge energy for change. One of the questions for us was how to harness that energy. The Women’s Equality Party was our answer—and of course we proposed it at WOW.

Catherine Mayer co-founded the Women's Equality PartyWOW - Women of the World Foundation

Catherine Mayer's TED talk on the Women's Equality Party

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