Appeal for artefacts to celebrate 100 years of women in the Royal Navy

100 years of women in the Royal Navy to be focus of new special exhibition in centenary year.  ‘Pioneers to Professionals: Women and the Royal Navy’ Centenary exhibition to focus on role of women in the Royal Navy
 
Nationwide appeal for artefacts to help tell story
 
The centenary of the Women’s Royal Naval Service (WRNS) in 2017 is prompting a nationwide appeal for artefacts to fill in the gaps of this important story, which is to be told in a special exhibition at The National Museum of the Royal Navy (NMRN), Portsmouth Historic Dockyard.  
 
The ‘Pioneers to Professionals: Women and the Royal Navy’ exhibition will chart the history of women working in the Naval Service, revealing some of the lesser-known stories of women dating right back to the Age of Sail more than 250 years ago.   
 
At that time women’s contribution was disguised or unofficial. Since then pioneers strove to achieve official recognition for professional women which eventually led to the establishment of a Naval Nursing Service in 1884, renamed the QARNNS in 1903, and the Women’s Royal Naval Service in 1917. 
 
The exhibition will reveal the impact of women’s involvement during both world wars, the Cold War to integration and beyond, to today’s serving personnel.
 
The NMRN holds items from the WRNS Historic Collection but wishes to include personal stories, anecdotes, documents, photos or personal possessions to help to show what women have achieved. We are interested in donations but would also welcome loans which would be returned once the exhibition finishes.
 
Exhibition curator Victoria Ingles said: “The role of women in the Royal Navy is a fascinating and relatively untold story.  We are really keen for items that show daily work or social activities from any period but particularly from:
 
First World War
Permanent Service 1949-1993
Post integration, 1993 onwards
 
If you can help with any of these please contact Victoria Ingles: Exhibitions@nmrn.org.uk
 
 

HMS Hermes returning from the Falklands