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Women’s Stories of Ford Dagenham

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To coincide with our production of Made in Dagenham we are looking for people to participate in an exciting new project all about the stories of women who worked at the Ford Dagenham plant between 1968 and 1984.

Are you a woman that used to work at the Ford Dagenham Plant during 1968-1984?

Or do you have a female friend or family member that worked at Ford during this time?

 

“We wanted our skill. The recognition of our skill.  Because B grade was unskilled. Someone who swept around your feet had B Grade. If you had to have a test to go in and get that job – would you want the same pay as them? So we took matters into our own hands.”Geraldine Deer, 1984 striker

The Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch, supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, launches a very exciting documentary video inspired by local voices, Women’s Stories of Ford Dagenham, in February 2017.

Women’s Stories of Ford Dagenham tells the vital story of the exceptional women who worked at Ford Dagenham between 1968-1984 who fought for women’s equal pay at Ford. This subsequently prompted the Equal Pay Act of 1970. Fourteen years later, the women of Ford Dagenham downed tools once more to strike for equality within the workplace. In 1984, they won their fight.

“Oh we laughed. We were good at laughing and joking about. I loved my job. Even though Fords were famous for its striking, I loved it there. I’d be there now if it wasn’t for retiring.” Pamela Brown, 1984 striker

Curated with support from 10 young women from the local community who have played leading roles in collecting these stories, we have interviewed over 50 machinists, workers, friends and family to tell these unforgettable stories. The project will exhibit these voices alongside photographs and transcripts. Delve into the world that was Ford Dagenham and get to know these sensational machinists, their fondest memories and the struggles they encountered whilst on the picket line, striking for women’s equality.

 

Tour Dates

Valence House Museum

Tuesday 7 March – Sunday 26 March

Frances Bardsley Academy for Girls

Monday 27 March – Tuesday 18 April

Romford Central Library

Tuesday 18 April – Monday 1 May

Rainham School for Girls

Tuesday 2 May – Friday 12 May

Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch

Monday 15 May – Monday 29 May

 

#DagenhamStories

Women’s Stories of Ford Dagenham Official Website

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pics

1953

1960’s

Eileen Pullen (3rd left) celebrating a colleague’s retirement, early ‘60s

Eileen Pullen (3rd left) celebrating a colleague's retirement, early '60s

1968

GWEN DAVIS AND EILEEN PULLEN, ORIGINAL FORD STRIKERS OF 1968

“WE WERE DETERMINED NOT TO GO BACK TO WORK UNTIL WE GOT SOMETHING. ONLY WHEN THEY RAN OUT OF SEATS DID THINGS START TO HAPPEN. ONE-AND-AHALF WEEKS, THEY REALISED THEY HAD TO GET US BACK.”

1970s

Gwen Davis (3rd right) with colleagues,  easter bonnet celebration, ’70s

Gwen Davis (3rd right) with colleagues, easter bonnet celebration, '70s

1970s

Eileen (3rd lady left) at her ‘shop”s easter bonnet parade in the ’70s at the river plant

Eileen (3rd lady left) at her 'shop''s easter bonnet parade in the '70s at the river plant

1970s

Eileen (3rd right), easter bonnet parade, river plant, ’70s

Eileen (3rd right), easter bonnet parade, river plant, '70s

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