THE first in a series of events to mark International Women’s Week in York was getting under way today.

A Loose Women-style debate at York Explore was taking place at 1pm today.

Panellists included artist Anne Hutchison; musician, founder and chair of York Open Studios Bernie Cullen; social entrepreneur at York Bike Rescue Jade Ward, and Coun Sonja Crisp, cabinet member with portfolio for equalities.

Find your Words, Find your Voice, will take place on Wednesday, between 10.30am and 1pm, at Dringhouses library, will see novelist Pauline Kirk and poet Rose Drew talk about the craft of writing and publicly sharing work.

Tickets cost £4 from or by phoning 01904 552674.

An exhibition about the Aero Girls will be held on Thursday, between 7pm and 8.30pm at the Rowntree Park Reading Café.

The exhibit looks at 20 portraits used in Rowntree’s 1950s Aero chocolate adverts, with a chance to meet the people behind the research project. Tickets cost £5 from or by visiting any York library.

There will be a talk by human rights defender Jestina Mukoko entitled One Step Forward, Three Steps Back: Women in the Zimbabwe Elections 2013. This is a free event. To book a place, or phone 01904 552828.

There will be a total of 64 events to mark International Women’s Week.

The Stepmother, by Githa Sowerby, will be performed at York Theatre Royal’s Studio all week, and the work of York based female artists Susanne Davies, Clare Nattress and Charlie Barnes will be celebrated with an exhibition at the Norman Rae Gallery in Derwent College at the University of York.

The full programme is available at libraries, community centres and city centre outlets or online at