Inspired by the Great Pilgrimage of 1913 which took place in support of women’s suffrage, Make Votes Matters campaigners in Hampshire recreated part of the original route of local pilgrims walking from Eastleigh to Winchester.

Local organiser James Southern said: “Turnout in local and national elections is often depressingly low. People don’t vote because they feel that either the result is a foregone conclusion, and their vote is wasted, or that all politicians are the same. Sometimes people will vote to keep someone they don’t like out, rather than a positive vote for who they want to be elected.”

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Local campaigner and Romsey resident Sally Yalden said: “Make Votes Matter includes members of all the political parties as well as those who feel politically ‘homeless’. It is a grassroots organisation with the aim of making parliament and eventually the local council closely match how the electorate vote through proportional representation.”

The walk was part of a National Action Day with some campaigning groups organising walks and events over several days, including a walk closely aligned to an original route from Grasmere to Preston which attracted a lot of attention and media coverage.

Make Votes Matter is planning forthcoming online meetings and local events to further the cause of Proportional Representation. To get involved or to find out more contact: or visit

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