• 10.00am - 5.30pm
  • FREE
  • Chelsea, London
  • 10.00am - 5.30pm
  • FREE
  • Chelsea, London

Women in combat roles

Female soldiers of The Royal Highland Fusiliers, Royal Regiment of Scotland, Helmand Province, 2011

Join our panel of experts as they discuss the UK government’s recent decision to lift the ban on women serving in combat roles.

In July 2016, the Prime Minister, David Cameron, announced that women would be allowed to serve in combat roles. The UK now joins countries including Canada, Norway and the US in allowing women to fight on the front line.

A hundred years ago, women could officially join the army for the first time as part of the Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps. Change has occurred around the world since then, and opportunities for women to serve in their country’s armed forces have opened up.

In partnership with the Royal United Services Institute, we’re bringing together a panel of experts to discuss the significance and implications of the decision to lift the ban on women in combat roles in the British Army.

Each speaker will have 8 to 10 minutes to share their views. We will then open up the discussion to the audience.


  • Dr Victoria Basham: Senior Lecturer in International Relations at Cardiff University
  • Bethan Targett: Former British Army commander
  • Deborah Haynes: Defence Editor at The Times
  • Elizabeth Quintana: Senior Research Fellow, Futures and Technology at the Royal United Services Institute
  • Brigadier Mark Abraham: Conducted the British Army’s 2010 review of women in ground close-combat roles

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"First time @NAM_London today. Thoroughly enjoyed it. Thought the presentation & interpretation made the subject accessible..."