Most history starts with a find.
So what happens when you start with an urban myth?
Today the Thames riverboat pilots tell the story of Waterloo Bridge being built by women during the Second World War. Official history had written this story out as Historian Dr Christine Wall discovered after years of trawling through archives.
In 2005 she was joined by film-maker Karen Livesey to pursue the story through oral history. We set out to find these women, The Ladies Bridge documentary explores why these bridge builders and 25,000 other female construction workers had been written out of history. It was not until 2015, with the find of threee photographs and a crucial interview from the documentary, that womens’ contribution to the building of the bridge was officially acknowledged.
Director: Karen Livesey
Producers : Jo Wiser & Karen Livesey
The Ladies Bridge on Twitter
BLUE PLAQUE CAMPAIGN
The LIGHT UP THE LADIES' BRIDGE event, the 2015 Historic England listing and a petition have led to English Heritage considering the placement of a blue plaque on Waterloo Bridge.
Please sign our petition for the plaque:
Head of History, Brit School, Croydon.
“An excellent resource for any teacher delivering GCSE modern world history... it broke down barriers between generations..”
Founding editor BBC History Magazine, Some time resident historian of BBC Newsnight
“Fascinating essay in social history and a gripping account of the search to recover memories of a particularly poignant time in British History, and the often forgotten role that women played in war-time.”