Songwriter lends her anthem to Edinburgh women statues campaign

Sharon Martin, singer/songwriter, who has lent her song 'Girl (Daughter of Scotland) to the Edinburgh Evening News statue campaign.
Sharon Martin, singer/songwriter, who has lent her song 'Girl (Daughter of Scotland) to the Edinburgh Evening News statue campaign.
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The empowering lyrics of “Girl” written by a Scottish musician – and endorsed by Nicola Sturgeon and Judy Murray – have been loaned to the Evening News statue campaign to encourage support for a new statue to honour Edinburgh’s greatest woman.

Sharon Martin, 36, was inspired to share the anthem she wrote as words of encouragement for the girls and women of Scotland following the First Minister’s support for recognition of the city’s famous daughters.

“She sent me a lovely letter after hearing the song and Judy Murray has promoted it on Twitter saying she loves it,” said Sharon. “I’m honoured to have their support.

“I share the sentiments of our First Minister that ‘you can’t be what you can’t see’ – as a society we have a responsibility to project and promote positive images of women, be it in the media or day-to-day life.

“Women should be celebrated for their achievements and contributions to their fields instead of being sexually objectified.

“Girls should be taught to be bold and determined, to work hard and educate themselves and in doing this, there is no limit to what you can achieve.

“Everyone is capable of achieving great things in life, and your gender should not inhibit this.”

The singer-songwriter, from Glasgow, wrote the music and lyrics for the song in 2015 and it was adopted as the official anthem of Scottish Women’s Football, Scottish Women in Sport and for the latest Scottish Rugby #BeTheBestYou campaign.

Sharon said: “Women’s sports have really taken to the song as it partners their ambition to create gender equality and inspire the next generation.

“I wanted to make sure the words were genuine and poignant. Most importantly I wanted it to stir pride and patriotism – our trailblazers and heroines, women that the world should know about.”

The music video features a montage of photographs highlighting women from history, such as Elsie Inglis, Mary Barbour and Jane Haining, alongside inspiration from today’s prominent women including athlete Katherine Grainger and Ms Sturgeon.

“I think the campaign to erect a statue for an Edinburgh heroine is imperative in creating visibility and recognition of the contributions women have made,” Sharon said. “This will hopefully inspire generations to come and promote positive gender attitudes amongst our boys.

“We still have a long way to go. This is evident when you witness the disparity in support and opportunity between men and women’s sports in Scotland and in identifying that there are hardly any statues on our streets dedicated to the memory of the many great women who have walked before us. This needs to change.”

The Evening News launched a campaign to raise awareness of women from history who have made an impact on the city and who are deserving of a visible reminder to honour and celebrate their significant contribution.

In a city where there are currently more statues of named animals than there are in the likeness of remarkable women, the campaign hopes to help increase recognition of these oft forgotten names.

fiona.pringle@jpress.co.uk