Your questions, Denise ...
1. The short answer is 'very strict' - there is no margin, and since the WA is submitted digitally, it is very easy for examiners to check (they will not read beyond the limit, which is likely to damage significantly the effect of the text). Sorry, but your student is going to HAVE to shorten.
2. I would be doubtful about this, Denise - it's an interesting idea, but I feel that the point of the WA is that it should be a dedicated, original piece of writing, not a 'copy & paste' from some other piece of text. I can't say definitively without seeing what the student proposes ... but I think it would be a very risky project (and anyway, would need justifying very well in the Rationale). Surely there will be a 'creative' way that the student can use the diary material ...?
Useful issue to raise, Gerry - but I think it can be resolved fairly easily. Let us remember that the underlying purpose of the EE is for students to demonstrate that they have a competent grasp of the academic method. A part of the academic method must be that one is aware of what other people have thought about the subject discussed - i.e. what we can find in secondary sources.
However, note that (i) the new guidance to which you refer doesn't specify in any way HOW MUCH reference there should be to secondary sources (nor what sort of secondary sources should be used); and (ii) so far as I can see, the marking criteria make no specific reference to the term 'secondary sources' - the nearest is under Criterion B, which refers to "selection of source material", but that could be principally quotes from the primary source, couldn't it?
So, my basic advice would be to tell students to include a couple of references to secondary sources just to show that they've used secondary sources ... but then, yes, above all (but not "only") focus on discuss the primary source text.
As to "gender roles...done to death" - maybe, but a close examination of the texts could demonstrate "insightful", even if not finally "original". Anyway, I don't think that 'originality' is really expected seriously in the EE. Also, a lively critical survey of the principal secondary-source views of gender roles could be quite fresh and insightful. Finally, I really can't comment on whether "C" would be the limit or not - the deep principles of marking standards in the EE remain a mystery to me!