No Petticoats Here

No Petticoats Here tells the stories of remarkable women of the First World War through original song and storytelling.

These songs recognise the extraordinary and inspirational achievements of women working in many spheres. From the women footballers who kept the sport alive during the First World War to the aspiring teenage journalist who dressed as a soldier and travelled to the Western Front on a bicycle, the women who risked their lives to treat the wounded yards from the German Front Line, an inventor and engineer, a master spy and the women who made the weapons of war.

I began uncovering the stories of extraordinary women in 2015 . During the early stages of my research I read that Dr Elsie Inglis, in her efforts to set up Scottish Women’s Hospitals during the Great War, was told to ‘go home and sit still; we don’t want any petticoats here’ by a Member of Parliament. ‘No Petticoats Here’ was born.

The research, songwriting, composition and delivery took place over fifteen months during which time I travelled from Portsmouth to Pervijze and from Ulverston to Ypres by way of many museums, battlefields, private collections, libraries and research centres.

Alongside writing my own songs, I developed songwriting workshops to explore the storytelling tradition and the ways stories can come alive through song. These workshops have been successfully delivered with SOCO Music, The Urban Vocal Group Portsmouth, Wiltshire Creative as well as at primary and secondary schools and festivals across the UK. The workshops are available to book for schools, community organisations and festivals. Please email me to discuss how these workshops can be adapted for your organisation.

A performance of No Petticoats Here typically consists of two sets of forty-five minutes each. To book a performance of ‘No Petticoats Here’ for a concert or festival, please email.

For more information on the project and the women’s stories please visit my dedicated website

No Petticoats Here was created with support from Arts Council England.

For a full list of the activities that took place during Remembrance 2020 click here
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