Women’s Work – a National Lottery Heritage Funded project for Accrington – will host a public screening of their brand new film on Saturday 25th September in Accrington Market Hall.

Heritage organisation History in Action CIC has received funding from the National Heritage Lottery Fund for Women’s Work, a project highlighting the experiences of ordinary working women working in Accrington’s historic male-dominated industries such as transport, local politics, textiles, and engineering.

The screening, which will be shown to a limited capacity audience at both 12.30pm and 2pm, explores stories and hardships from women in Accrington and the Hyndburn area from the 1950s and 1960s.

From sexism and sexual assault, to mistreatment from those in power, the live screening will highlight what it was like to be a working woman during that time. Even so, huge milestones were achieved in the 60s and 70s including the Equal Pay and Sex & Racial Discrimination Acts, as well as the first female Minister of State being appointed in 1965.

The screenplay was written by Heritage in Action’s Playwright Mick Martin following interviews which took place during lockdown, before being filmed using local amateur actors from the Oswaldtwistle Arts Centre and Burnley College.

Bradford-based Mick is an award-winning playwright, producing the smash hit Once Upon a Time In Wigan – a tribute to the Northern Soul “all-nighter” dances to soul classics of the 60s and 70s, as well as “It’s In the Blood,” – which focused on the important role that Rugby League plays at the heart of its communities.

One story in particular that warms the heart in the new Women’s Work film, is the story of Betty Taylor. Betty was the player/manager of the women’s football team, Accrington Wanderers during the early 60s. At that time the F.A. refused to allow women’s teams to use their grounds. Betty was outspoken in her campaign against the FA’s ruling, as well as leading her team to victory in many matches, and raising hundreds of pounds for charity.

Belinda Scarlett, curator at the National Football Museum in Manchester, commented: “I was fascinated to hear about History in Action’s work and the story of Betty Taylor uncovered through their Women’s Work project in Accrington. The history of women’s football is often hidden away in the homes and memories of the women who shaped the game and oral history is a fantastic way to uncover and preserve these histories. It has been great to work with History in Action CIC and the National Football Museum will be delighted to display material from Betty and Accrington Wanderers Women’s FC in our displays next year.”

If you want to learn more about Women’s Work, there will also be an information market stall open on the day or visit www.stanhillvillage.co.uk.

Project Co-Ordinator Trizia Wells, said: “It’s wonderful that despite COVID restrictions we have managed to record and use so many local stories, we have met some fabulous women and this film event is a must see for all Accringtonians old and young. Make sure you book early as space is limited.”

Tickets will be available for the event from 1st September on Eventbrite.

If you can’t make it to the live screening, email trizia@historyinaction.net or visit the website www.historyinaction.net to find out more.