Women in War Theatre Project

In 2019 we created a new community theatre and history project aimed at using performance techniques to learn more about the role of women serving on the front-line during the First World War. The six-month project was supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund and the First World War Engagement Centre (Gateways to WW1). At the end of the project, we produced a devised piece of theatre and performed to a sell-out audience in the main house of the Camden People’s Theatre, London and received positive recognition and feedback for what we had achieved. We invited local medical staff from the University College Hospital London, students, community groups and members of the public.

 

We based our project upon the memoirs of Lady Dorothie Feilding as a starting point and the Munro’s Ambulance Corp. During the project we ran weekly workshops at the Theatre Deli, visits to local museums and developed historical enquiry skills in using archives and artefacts.

Watch our short film below to see what our audiences thought about our production:

Education and Support Materials:

The following materials were researched and created by our original project members and are free to use. They will download as a word document:

 

A First World War Ambulance

 

What were the ambulances like?

 

Pictures of First War Ambulances

What did Ambulance Drivers wear?

 

Buckle up! – A scene from the Women in War play

 

British Red Cross Transport during WW1

(A useful article published by the Red Cross)

 

Let’s explore: Activities to do

 

The First World War Nurse

 

The role of nurses during WW1

 

Pictures of Nurses in WW1

 

The daily life of a WW1 Nurse

 

“Meeting Sister” – A scene from the Women in War play

 

“The Sister” Monologue – A piece from the Women in War play

 

Let’s explore: Activities to do

 

The First World War Hospital

 

First World War Hospitals – An information sheet

 

WW1 images of Nurses Stations

 

Meet the Characters:

 

Lady Dorothie Feilding

 

Dr Hector Munro

 

Miss Knocker & Miss Chisholm

Short Film Gallery

Watch our short films below:

Feedback Received:

 

“I thoroughly enjoyed every workshop. As a retired Captain, it was a delight to learn more about the role of women during the First World War and to highlight many of the unsung heroes of the War.” (Elizabeth McNally, Member)

 

“As a nurse, it was extremely heart-warming to see such a positive project paying respect to many unsung heroes of the past in such a beautiful way.” (Clare Greasley)

 

“Wherever possible Alfie ensured that each of us felt that we had ownership of the project. I had a great interest in the role of the Ambulance Drivers played as a family member was a driver during the First World War. He made sure that the workshops were focused, but also allowed flexibility for personal curiosity too!” (Channing Rider, Member)

 

“A super performance. Well-acted, beautifully told.” (Adam Barnes, Audience)

 

“It was a jam-packed performance and it was evident that they had used a range of learning materials to explore the life of women and included these in creating a top-notch production” (Lesley Hilton, Audience member)

 

“A wonderful performance. It was very informative and a lovely story!” (Rebecca Morton, Audience member)

 

“It was a touching tribute to all the nurses, doctors and ambulance staff which gave up their lives during the First World War.” (Edward Campbell)

 

“It was a pleasure playing host to the Women in War play here at the CPT. We were delighted by the positive reviews received by our regular theatre-goers.” (James Cross, Camden People’s Theatre)

 

“Working with Alfie James Productions once again was a sere delight. Thank you and well done for all your achievements gained.” (Dr Sam Carroll, First World War Engagement & Gateways)

 

“Alfie James has done it again – created an inspirational project which brings together members of the community to honour and learn about the past. His enthusiasm is infectious.” (Luigi, Member)

 

“I have learnt so much from this project. Thank you for allowing me to be involved.” (Colin Chapman)

 

“I’ve enjoyed every second of it. I don’t want to take the nurses uniform off” (Amy Harding, Member)

 

“A brilliant show…again…we thoroughly enjoyed it.” (Tom Novelle)