Leeds nostalgia: bomb factory was run by women

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This week’s film clip, courtesy of Yorkshire Film Archive, contains unique footage of women workers in a munitions factory during the Second World War and highlights the industrial process of making the 84 pounder shell.

A couple of women wearing overalls, steel toe-capped boots and heavy duty gloves, unload empty forging cases from a truck, rolling the cases along the ground with the help of their feet.

A small crane is used to lift the forgings up in groups of three. A woman, wearing a skirt and high-heel boots, works the small crane to pick up three forgings.

A woman sits in the crane control box and lowers the hook.

Forgings come off a conveyor belt where a woman seals their ends using a blowtorch. A forging is raised and lowered by a crane onto a spinning device where a hole is drilled in the bottom.

There is a close-up of a conveyor belt, and a couple of women unload metal shavings.

A woman loads and unloads shells from a furnace using only her bare hands and a rag.

For the full clip, go to our website and follow the links to this story under the ‘nostalgia’ tab.

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