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Land Girls: Cinderellas of the Soil

Start Date 3 October 2009
End Date 14 March 2010
Venue Brighton Museum and Art Gallery
Location Brighton, England
Curator Amy de la Haye
Exhibition display of women's breeches

The forgotten army of the Land Girls tell their story in this new exhibition

During World War II, over 75,000 women joined the Women’s Land Army. The heroic image of the land girl standing tall in her corduroy breeches, green jumper and brown felt hat, fork resting over her shoulder, has become an iconic symbol of the triumph of wartime agriculture.

The exhibition highlights personal stories, propaganda, paintings, posters and photographs. It reveals the experiences of women as they leave their pre-war lives to learn milking, rat catching, threshing and tractor driving. At the heart of this story are the surviving items of their distinctive uniform – where it was made, who wore it, what they did, how women
felt about wearing it and the reactions they encountered.

The Land Girls also focuses on the contribution in Sussex. Their headquarters were at Balcombe Place; land girls were trained at Plumpton Agricultural College, and lived and worked on the Sussex Downs.

Images courtesy of Brighton Museum