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.
1 June 2018, 11.30am
Join historian Dr Kate Vigurs to uncover the experiences of the Special Operations Executive’s female agents in France during the Second World War.
6 July 2018, 11.30am
Dr Andrea McKenzie discusses the experiences of Canadian nurses during the First World War.
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..."
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