Remembering Northern Ireland’s Women at War

World War Two stories inevitably often feature men but Northern Ireland's women at war were a force to be reckoned with from the Blitz to Bletchley Park.

Delia Murphy

Delia Murphy

Entertainer

Delia Murphy was known as "the mammy of them all" in Irish folk music circles. The people of Belfast remember a heroic performance during the Belfast Blitz.

Women in the Services

Marjorie Wilson Anderson

Senior Commander | 192396

WARNING: This article on Senior Commander Marjorie Wilson Anderson deals with the issue of suicide. Miss Anderson died in Ballymena, Co. Antrim in 1943.

Jeannie Elizabeth Armstrong

Wren | 41491

Wren Jeannie Elizabeth Armstrong died on 21st August 1943 at home in Belfast, Co. Antrim. She served with the Women's Royal Naval Service on HMS Caroline.

Doreen Meta Brown

Private | W/38803

Private Doreen Meta Brown of Downpatrick, Co. Down died on 6th June 1941 aged 18 years old while serving in the British Army Auxiliary Territorial Service.

Joy Clements

WAAF

Joy Clements was best known as a renowned artist influenced by Carl Gustav Jung's dream theories but during World War Two, she served in the Women's Auxiliary Air Force.

Elizabeth Joyce Coleman

Aircraftwoman 1st Class | 2145035

Aircraftwoman 1st Class Elizabeth Joyce Coleman was known as Joy. Born in Dublin, she served in the Women's Auxiliary Air Force during the Second World War.

Elizabeth Cooke

Aircraftwoman 1st Class | 2098275

On 21st November 1945, Aircraftwoman1st Class Elizabeth Cooke died in Belfast, Co. Antrim. She had served with the Women's Auxiliary Air Force in the war.

Rosemary Elizabeth Cox

Leading Aircraftwoman | 2145916

Rosemary Elizabeth Cox died on 3rd April 1945 at Purdysburn Fever Hospital, Co. Down. Although born in Dublin, Ireland, she lived in Belfast, Co. Antrim.

Kathleen Cuthbert

Kathleen Cuthbert

Civilian | Bletchley Park Operative

Born in Doagh, Co. Antrim, Kathleen Cuthbert went on to work on some of the highest level, top-secret work in the United Kingdom during World War Two.

Ruth Hannah Dickson

Sister | 223772

Sister Ruth Hannah Dickson of Eglish, Co. Tyrone died on 24th December 1944. The Presbyterian Missionary served as a field nurse in China and Singapore.

Emma Fleck

Sister | 345058

Sister Emma Fleck of Dervock, Co. Antrim died on 22nd November 1947 having served with Queen Alexandra's Imperial Military Nursing Service in Singapore.

Mabel Glass

Mabel Glass

Air Transport Auxiliary Pilot

Born in Whitehead, Co. Antrim, Mabel Glass was a pioneering aviator, competing in races and serving in the Air Transport Auxiliary alongside Amy Johnson.

Nora Hughes

Sergeant | W/758

Sergeant Nora Hughes of Belfast, Co. Antrim served in the Auxiliary Territorial Service in World War Two. She died in her hometown on 23rd March 1946.

Rebecca McCabe

Rebecca McCabe

Wren

Wren Rebecca McCabe served with HMS Caroline, Belfast from 1942-1944 before moving to the Signals Distribution Office, Belfast Castle leading up to D-Day.

Elizabeth Scott

Corporal | W/49605

Corporal Elizabeth Scott of the Auxiliary Territorial Service died on 8th August 1944. Her grave is in Carnmoney Cemetery, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim.

Jocelyn Topping

Leading Aircraftwoman | 2165455

Leading Aircraftwoman Jocelyn Topping from Portadown, Co. Armagh died on 26th June 1947 while serving with the Women's Auxiliary Air Force after the war.

Stories of women in Northern Ireland

Matilda Violet Bleakley

Civilian

Matilda Violet Bleakley lived at 8 Thorndyke Street, Belfast. She was the wife of Thomas William Bleakley. Matilda died during the Belfast Blitz in 1941.

Margaret Buick

Civilian

Born in Armoy, Co. Antrim, Margaret Buick was only 9 years old when she died as a result of the Luftwaffe attacks on Glasgow, Scotland on 14th March 1941.

Olive Calder

Civilian

Olive Calder of Belfast, Co. Antrim worked as a housekeeper in London when she died on 12 October 1940 as a result of the Luftwaffe bombing of the city.

Beatrice Harriett Maude Chambers

Civilian

Mrs. Beatrice Harriett Maude Chamber born in Ballymoney, Co. Antrim died on 18th December 1942 as the Luftwaffe attacked the coastal town of Eastbourne.

Eleanor Ida Sinclair Collen

Civilian

Eleanor Ida Sinclair Collen of Dungannon, Co. Tyrone was a nurse in England. She died on 23rd May 1943 when Luftwaffe bombers attacked Bournemouth, Dorset.

Mary Ann Crotty

Civilian

Mary Ann Crotty lived at 8 Thorndyke Street, Belfast. She shared a home with her sister Matilda. Both women lost their lives during the Belfast Blitz.

Ann Margaret Devlin

Civilian

Ann Margaret Devlin of Gortin, Co. Tyrone died on 25th September 1940 as a result of injuries sustained when the Nazi Luftwaffe attacked London, England.

Laura Jane Donnell

Civilian

Laura Jane Donnell was born in Co. Londonderry but lived in England at her time of death on 17th April 1941 when the Luftwaffe raided the city of London.

Douglas Family at Belfast City Cemetery

Emily Douglas

Civilian

Young mother Emily Douglas died alongside five of her young children as Luftwaffe bombs fell on North Belfast during the Belfast Blitz on 16th April 1941.

Emma Florence Frazer

Civilian

State Registered Nurse Emma Florence Frazer of Warrenpoint, Co. Down died on 16th November 1943 at 1 Lonsdale Villas, Plymouth, Devon, United Kingdom.

Angeline Grattan

Civilian

Angeline Grattan lived in Bangor, Co. Down with her mother and sister when she died as a result of enemy action on 16th April 1941 during the Belfast Blitz.

Matilda Lillian Grattan

Civilian

Matilda Lillian Grattan lived in Bangor, Co. Down with her family when she died as a result of enemy action on 16th April 1941 during the Belfast Blitz.

Shelagh Grattan

Civilian

Shelagh Grattan lived in Bangor, Co. Down with her mother and sister when she died as a result of enemy action on 16th April 1941 during the Belfast Blitz.

Madge Guiney

Civilian

Madge Guiney was the daughter of a couple of Dromore, Co. Down. She died as a result of the Luftwaffe bombing of Glasgow and Clydebank on 15th March 1941.

Sarah Guiney

Civilian

Sarah Guiney and her family hailed from Dromore, Co. Down. She died as a result of the Luftwaffe bombing of Glasgow and Clydebank on 15th March 1941.

Sara B Harper

Civilian

Sara B Harper of Willowholme Street, Belfast, Co. Down was a passenger on SS Athenia when it came under attack from U-30 in the North Atlantic in 1939.

Edith Kohner

Jewish Refugee

Edith Kohner, her husband Franz, and two young children came to Northern Ireland as Jewish refugees escaping Hitler's Nazi persecution in Czechoslovakia.

Ruth Kohner

Jewish Refugee

Ruth Kohner made a life in Northern Ireland after escaping to Millisle, Co. Down in 1939 due to Nazi persecution of Jews in her homeland of Czechoslovakia.

Maureen Mathes

Civilian

Maureen Mathes left Northern Ireland in 1944. The Derry girl became the first Irish GI bride to land in America when she arrived with husband Bob Mathes.

Mary Stevenson

Civilian

Mary Stevenson and her family hailed from Dromore, Co. Down. She died as a result of the Luftwaffe bombing of Glasgow and Clydebank on 15th March 1941.

Maria Todd

Civilian

Mrs. Maria Todd had been the organist at Tartarghan Parish Church for over 50 years when she died in a road accident during the blackout in October 1940.

Maria Wright

Civilian

Maria Wright and her family hailed from Dromore, Co. Down. She died as a result of the Luftwaffe bombing of Glasgow and Clydebank on 15th March 1941.