The Independent marks International Women’s Day 2024

The Independent marks International Women’s Day by unveiling Independent Women: The Influence List 2024, and raises money for Refuge in partnership with Outernet London

  • Independent Women: The Influence List 2024 recognises Britain’s 50 most influential women 
  • Portraits of 10 of the listees, photographed by Sane Seven, to be unveiled at Outernet London, the UK’s no. 1 tourist attraction, and later sold to raise funds for Refuge
  • Tracey Emin has donated a new, one-off photographic portrait in aid of Refuge, entitled ‘The Empty Room’, also on exclusive public display at Outernet
  • Penny Mordaunt, Paulette Simpson and Rosie Jones are among those writing exclusive articles for The Independent this International Women’s Day


The Independent is marking International Women’s Day by celebrating the most influential female figures in British society today. In partnership with Outernet London, portraits of some of the women featured on this year’s Independent Women: The Influence List will be publicly exhibited in the centre of London’s West End, spreading the IWD message of Inspire Inclusion to millions whilst raising money for The Independent’s charity partner, Refuge.


Independent Women: The Influence List 2024

Independent Women: The Influence List 2024 recognises the 50 most influential women in Britain     today, who are paving the way for the next generation across entertainment, sport, politics, business, art, literature, fashion and social change.

This year, Esther Ghey is placed top of the list, followed by Kate Garraway, Claudia Winkleman, Mary Earps and Sue Gray.

It is an eclectic line-up, bringing together women from a vast range of orbits who all share one thing in common: their impact on the world that surrounds them.


Photographic portraits in aid of Refuge

Visionary photographer Sane Seven has shot specially commissioned portraits of 10 of this year’s listees, which will be unveiled and exhibited at Outernet in central London, before being sold to raise much needed funds for Refuge. The images are powerful black and white depictions of a varied selection of extraordinary women, who have come together to raise money and awareness for Refuge, the UK’s largest domestic abuse charity.

In alphabetical order, the 10 women photographed are:


  • Amy Dowden — dancer and presenter
  • Anna Whitehouse — journalist, author, broadcaster and campaigner
  • Carol Vorderman — broadcaster, author and TV presenter
  • Baroness Floella Benjamin OM DBE — politician, author, presenter, campaigner and actor
  • Jameela Jamil — actor, presenter, writer and activist
  • Kate Garraway MBE — broadcaster and journalist
  • Maggie Alphonsi MBE — Rugby World Cup winner, broadcaster and speaker
  • The Rt Hon Penny Mordaunt MP politician
  • Rosie Jones — comedian, writer and actor
  • Sara Pascoe — comedian and author


In addition, world-renowned British artist, Tracey Emin, has generously donated an exclusive, one-off photographic portrait for the occasion, to generate money and awareness for Refuge. The image, entitled ‘The Empty Room’, shows Emin reclining in what she refers to as ‘the empty room’, with one of her beloved cats, Teacup, resting under her legs. Her urostomy tube falls  from her stoma at her waist side.

The 11 photographs will be unveiled at Outernet London, which more than six million people visited within its first year of opening and daily footfall stands at 223,000. Outernet’s flagship space, The Now Building, is home to the world’s most advanced screens – standing over four storeys tall, spanning 360 degrees and in 16k definition. The portraits will be exclusively exhibited in Outernet’s space Now Trending, completely free for all audiences, right in the centre of London by Tottenham Court Road Station. The photographs will be on public show at Outernet until the end of the month.

Aligning with The Independent’s mission to make change happen, the portraits will be sold after their run at Outernet to raise funds for Refuge. All proceeds will help provide valuable support for the essential services that Refuge delivers, including the National Domestic Abuse Helpline, enabling women and children to live without violence and fear. Further information on buying the exclusive portraits will be provided via The Independent. In the meantime, people can register their interest by emailing


Exclusive columns

Today’s edition of The Independent includes exclusive opinion pieces from women including Rosie Jones, Penny Mordaunt and Anna Whitehouse. The articles present their experiences and perspectives on gender equality.

Geordie Greig, Editor-In-Chief, The Independent, said: “It is so right to have an International Women’s Day to celebrate, campaign for and enhance opportunity for half the population of the planet. Women are too often held back.  A lot has been achieved, but there is more to do.  Lots more. The Independent has a proud history of highlighting causes for – and by – women. This will never stop. Refuge is a wonderful example of philanthropy, aiding women in need – and we are proud to support them.”

Abigail Ampofo, Interim CEO, Refuge, said: “Refuge is proud to continue partnering with The Independent this International Women’s Day. The decision to spotlight these extraordinary women at Outernet in the centre of London serves as a powerful reminder of women’s strength and resilience in the face of persisting patriarchal attitudes. As the country’s largest single provider of specialist domestic abuse services, we witness immense acts of strength and bravery by the women we support daily. Sadly, we know that Refuge’s services

are a lifeline to thousands of women and their children throughout the country, given the prevailing epidemic of violence against women and girls. Currently, one in four women will experience domestic abuse in their lifetime, and two women a week are killed by a current or former partner.

Refuge remains steadfast in our commitment to addressing and eradicating gender-based violence. The specialist services we provide; from community-based support to our tech-facilitated abuse team and our 24-hour helpline, are designed to effectively address increasingly complex and insidious cases of domestic abuse. We hope that the funds raised through The Independent’s brilliant initiative will provide a vital contribution towards Refuge’s life-saving support for survivors across the country.”

Jessica Dracup-Holland, CMO at Outernet London, said: “As we celebrate International Women’s Day, Outernet is proud to announce our partnership with The Independent; two major media brands uniting to amplify the voices and stories of women who have made incredible impact in the world. Through this collaboration, we shine a spotlight on the remarkable achievements of prominent women featured in The Independent’s IWD list, using exclusively shot photography to create an inspiring new exhibition. Together, we not only celebrate progress but also drive meaningful change as this project supports the important work of Refuge. This partnership underscores our commitment to diversity, equality, and the empowerment of women everywhere.”

Sane Seven, photographer, said: “Each photo I take is about digging deeper into the real stories of women, highlighting their increasing influence in our evolving society. Collaborating with The Independent and Refuge, we’re sparking real talk about fairness and freedom, and showing the world what it looks like when women are truly free to be themselves.”

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