No Game For Girls: A history of women's football in WW1

Female football player, No Game For Girls project
A re-enactment of the first female munition workers football match in Coventry nearly 100 years on Eyeful Media CIC

Heritage Grants

Coventry, West Midlands
Eyefull Media CIC
No game for girls explored how First World War munitionette football teams drew crowds of thousands before they were banned after the war by an anti-women’s football campaign.

Before the war, many people considered a woman’s role to be in the home. The conflict gave young women the freedom  to move away from their families, choose how they spent their free time and what they wore in public. However when soldiers returned from the war, women were pressured to revert to their traditional roles. In this climate, the  Football Association declared that ‘the game of football is quite unsuitable for females’.

Thirteen young people from Eyeful Media CiC collected photographs, memorabilia and family stories from the local area and interviewed heritage experts about wartime football. They shared their discoveries through an exhibition, booklet and film alongside seminars, school presentations and museum drop-in days. Finally, they recreated a 1917 Coventry ladies football match wearing First World War era kit and adopting the names of the original players.

Fran Porter, Eyefull Media CIC, said: “The fact of the FA ban in 1921 has really engaged people with the ‘what if’ question – where would women’s football be had that ban not been imposed?”

Read more about the project on the Eyefull Media website and via this project video.

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