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Results Found (4), Result Page (1 of 1)
Search Aspect (Barnbow Munitions Factory )
Location - Leeds & District

Barnbow Munitions Factory, fire practice (Cross Gates) (3 comments)
Black & White imagec1915-18. View shows women taking part in a fire practice at the Barnbow Munitions Factory on Manston Lane. This factory was set up during the First World War to manufacture munitions for the troops. Though health and safety practices were in place, as seen here, in such a highly dangerous atmosphere some accidents could not be prevented and 3 fatal explosions took place. On the 5th December 1916 35 women were killed, on 31st March 1917 two girls died and on 31st March 1918 3 men were the casualties.
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Barnbow Munitions Factory, group photograph of workers (Cross Gates) (3 comments)
Black & White imageUndated. View of a group of workers taken at the Barnbow Munitions Factory during the First World War. The National Shell Filling Factory was built on 313 acres of land belonging to the Gascoigne Estate and many of the workers there were women. It was dangerous work and 35 women were tragically killed in an explosion on 5th December, 1916. Another two young women lost their lives on 31st March 1917 and three men died in another accident just one year later, on 31st March 1918. In the centre, the young girl who is not wearing a cap can be identified as Marcella Elizabeth Smith, later Holmes. She was born in 1898 and was in her late teens at the time this photograph was taken. She lived in Back Craven Street in Woodhouse. On the back two rows the majority are older men, most wearing flat caps and some are in aprons. On the front row five children sit cross-legged.
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Barnbow Munitions Factory, portrait of three young female workers (Cross Gates)
Black & White image1917. Portrait of three young female workers taken during the First World War at the Barnbow Munitions Factory in Manston Lane. The factory was officially known as "National Filling Factory No. 1" and it was purpose-built, opening in December 1915. The "Barnbow Lasses" pictured are taking a break from filling shells. In the years of the Great War Barnbow was staffed by a high percentage of women, at the height it was around 93%. The work was very hard and hazardous with long hours and no holidays. Each woman was searched at the start of her shift to ensure that she had no metal hairpins or buttons etc. on her person; only wood or bakelite objects were allowed. Cigarettes and matches were obviously banned items also. The women were at risk from the extremely dangerous chemicals they had to work with. Fatalities due to explosions in the factory occurred on three separate occasions. The most tragic of these happened on the night of Tuesday, 5th December, 1916, when 170 women were working their shift in Room 42. A huge explosion killed 35 of the women instantly and many more suffered severe injuries. Other occupational hazards included working with chemical propellants which had the ominous effect of turning the exposed skin and hair yellow. Because of this the women workers were dubbed the "Barnbow Canaries". The girls were encouraged to drink plenty of milk to counteract the effects. Barnbow actually had its own farm with a herd of dairy cows producing 300 gallons of milk each day. In the centre of the picture is Sarah Spink Hooper, nee Ellis, who married Arthur Hooper in 1916. The couple were from Wetherby and their daughter Joyce was also occupied filling shells during the Second World War, at the Royal Ordnance Factory at Thorp Arch. Sarah was born in 1893 so would have been 24 when this photograph was taken.
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Barnbow Munitions Factory, women workers (Cross Gates) (5 comments)
Black & White image1916. View showing a group of women and girls employed at the Barnbow Munitions Factory during the First World War. The factory, situated on Manston Lane, was set up in 1915 as a National Shell Filling Factory. 16,000 people, mostly women, were employed there at the peak of its production. It was a highly dangerous job and three fatal explosions occurred there, including one in 1916 which killed 35 women.
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