Mrs Bilocca's way...
The story of the ‘headscarf revolutionaries’ has travelled the world and come home again. Today I was sent this photograph of a new street sign for "Lil Bilocca Way" on the aptly-named Meaux Rise, Kingswood, Hull.
For it was from the Meaux Cistercian Abbey at Wawne, near Hull [then known as Wyke], that our great maritime city had its fishing industry begin in the 12th century.
Across the centuries, the brave fishermen of our city brought home the harvest of the sea at massive risk with the price of fish measured in men's lives.
In the middle of the 20th century the greatest peacetime fishing disaster of that era struck when the Hull trawlers St Romanus, Kingston Peridot and Ross Cleveland sailed never to return in the Dark Winter of 1968.
This led to an uprising of fishwives led by Mrs Lillian Bilocca which ended in Westminster’s corridors of power.
Their story has been told globally and inspired a range of artistic reactions from poetry and street murals in the Hessle Road community to radio and TV documentaries… and more.
This street sign is yet another indicator that the incredible, brave women – Mrs Lillian Bilocca, Mrs Mary Denness, Mrs Yvonne Blenkinsop and Mrs Christine Jensen MBE – who fought for better safety at sea after the Triple Trawler Disaster are being recognised even more in their home town – and most importantly by their own folk.
Perhaps now is the time for a few more roads to be named in honour of these women, whose bravery in one of the most successful civil uprisings of the twentieth century, saved (and continues to save) countless lives.