Call for volunteers and information to help uncover the remarkable legacies of Norfolk women from the First World War
The Forum, Norwich is looking for volunteers to participate in an exciting research project revealing the legacies of Norfolk women from the First World War.
The volunteers’ research will form a public exhibition at The Forum in November, commemorating the end of the First World War. The exhibition is part of The Forum’s ongoing Norfolk in the First World War: Somme to Armistice project which has received funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund.
Unbeknownst to many, hundreds of women were amongst the British war dead of the First World War. Whilst not involved in combat roles they did operate as nurses and ambulance drivers in dangerous areas close to the front lines. Many died as a result of accidents, illnesses or disease while serving home and abroad.
Military Historian, Neil Storey has identified 21 Norfolk women who died while serving in uniform and the Norfolk in the First World War project team would like to hear from anyone with stories, photographs or additional information about these women or other Norfolk Women who should be added to the Roll of Honour.
The Forum is hosting a free information evening on Thursday 8 March at 7pm where members of the public can find out more about the project and hear a talk by Neil Storey on First World War Women of Norfolk: Legacies.
Volunteers will be supported in their research by Neil Storey, and will receive training including heritage and research skills into topics including family history and military ancestry. Volunteers will also receive training in public speaking, digital and media engagement skills.
Sarah Power, Events & Learning Manager at The Forum said: “This will be an exciting and rewarding project to take part in. By being part of our project team, volunteers are likely to uncover fascinating stories about remarkable women whilst developing new skills and friendships.”
Booking is essential for the information evening, places can be booked via Eventbrite . To contact the team email Lizzie on firstname.lastname@example.org . Volunteers have until Monday 26 March 2018 to register their interest in taking part and can find out further information about the project by visiting theforumnorwich.co.uk/learning/volunteer
For more information please contact Richard Smith, Marketing Communications Manager tel: 01603 727975 Email: email@example.com
One of the Fallen: Gladys Helen Cobb
One of the Norfolk women identified was Gladys Cobb from Gaywood. Gladys served as a Worker with the Queen Mary's Auxiliary Army Corps (QMAAC), attached to the Royal Engineers Inland Waterways Department at the Military Port of Richborough in Kent.
Although the war had been over for three months there was still a demand for supplies from soldiers helping clear up the carnage in France and Belgium as well as from the occupying forces in Germany. Many women in the QMAAC were serving out their term or volunteered to stay on to help out during this period. However, after the war a deadly flu pandemic gripped the country, claiming claimed thousands of lives.
Gladys was one of those to succumb and died at Stonar Camp Hospital in Richborough on 12 February 1918 aged 23. Her body was returned to Norfolk and she was buried at King's Lynn, Gaywood Cemetery. Her name appears on the Gaywood War Memorial.
Roll of names of Women who laid down their lives in the First World War
Researched by project historian Neil R. Storey. Please note this list does not include the names of those women killed in air raids, bombardments or those who lost their lives working in munitions.
Astell, Frances Ethel (Norwich), TFNS
Burton-Fanning, Beris Selina Frances (Norwich), BRCS VAD
Cavell, Edith Louisa (Swardeston) Matron
Cobb, Gladys Helen (Gaywood), QMAAC
Davy, Violet Elizabeth (North Elmham), WRAF
Duffen, Lilian Silver (Norwich), TFNS
Frost, Minna (Honingham), Nurse
Goldsmith, Amy Alice Victoria (Norwich), TFNS
Goodwin, Barbara Ellen (Great Massingham), WRAF
Hall, Annie (Reedham), QMAAC
Humphrey, Elsie M. (Norwich), TFNS
Long, Alice (Norwich), QAIMNS
Matthews, Mary Maria (Buxton), QMAAC
Meal, Violet (Caister-on-Sea), QMAAC
Murrell, Evelyn Irene (Downham Market), WRAF
Raines, Alvinia May (Heacham), BRCS VAD
Rodwell, Mary Ann (Ditchingham), QAIMNSR
Strange, Alice Marian (Brockdish), BRCS VAD
Wakefield, Jessie Emily ARRC (Norwich), TFNS
Webb, Gladys May (Heacham), WRAF
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