Since 2016, women have been able to serve in combat roles. However, the history of women's service in the Army stretches much further back in time.
Formed in 1940, SOE was an underground army that waged a secret war in enemy-occupied Europe and Asia. Its agents demonstrated incredible courage and resourcefulness in their guerrilla war.
Women were finally allowed to undertake combat roles in 2016. But even before that, many female soldiers had been serving in war zones around the world.
Despite the difficulties, soldiers' affairs of the heart have flourished; some casual, others ultimately leading to engagement, marriage and a life together.
During the 19th century, soldiers' wives played a significant role in supporting troops on campaign. Here we take a look at some of these women, a few of whom became minor celebrities.
The modern British Army declares itself an equal opportunities employer. But becoming so has presented challenges for an institution deeply rooted in hierarchy, routine, regiment and tradition.
During the Second World War women took on increasingly diverse roles. But, like their First World War predecessors, they were still prevented from fighting.
As the entire nation mobilised for the First World War, women stepped up to new challenges.
Florence Nightingale was a legend in her own lifetime and one of the most famous women in British history.
This was the women's branch of the British Army between 1949 and 1992. Its origins were in the voluntary auxiliary units created for women during the First and Second World Wars.
3 September 2018 - 23 July 2019
Investigate the concept of Total War by tracing the steps taken to prepare an individual for industrialised conflict in the First and Second World Wars.
2 March 2019, 10.00am
Discover how women have helped shape the British Army with a day of performances, music and talks.
8 March 2019, 11.30am
On International Women’s Day, join Dr Kate Vigurs to learn about seven significant women who risked their lives for an important cause.
9 March 2019
Join us for a performance of the incredible tale of Mother Ross, who disguised herself as a man to join the British Army.
15 March 2019, 11.30am
Elizabeth Lockart-Mure tells the little-known story of the Women's Auxiliary Service (Burma), which ran mobile canteens for the Allied troops involved in the Burma campaign.
22 March 2019, 11.30am
Mary Moreland, Chairman of the War Widows Association, will discuss the charity’s history and its role in campaigning for equality for all war widows in Great Britain.
KS3 (Age 11 to 14)
Explore the real people performing a soldier's tasks, their reasons for joining and the lasting impact it can have on their lives.
"First time @NAM_London today. Thoroughly enjoyed it. Thought the presentation & interpretation made the subject accessible..."
Be the first to hear about our latest events, exhibitions and offers. Simply enter your email address below to start receiving our monthly email newsletter.
National Army Museum, Royal Hospital Road, London, SW3 4HTRegistered Charity Number: 237902