The Dick, Kerr Ladies Football Team: 1917-2017

Where: Media Factory – The Media Innovation Centre

The display commemorates 100 years of the Dick, Kerr Ladies and their inspirational story of overcoming discrimination and adversity to become the world’s most famous womens football team. The Dick, Kerr Ladies were formed in 1917 at the Dick, Kerr & Co Ltd munitions factory in Preston, Lancashire during the First World War. On Christmas Day 1917, 10,000 spectators came to Deepdale, the home of Preston North End Football to witness the start of the most phenomenal success story in the history of women’s sport. On Boxing Day 1920, 53,000 spectators packed into Goodison Park, Everton, to see the Dick, Kerr Ladies take on St Helens Ladies. Incredibly, despite its popularity, in 1921 the FA banned womens football, setting back the development of the womens game for decades.

Generations of football supporters grew up thinking football was a mans game when years earlier crowds for the womens matches had easily surpassed many of the attendances at mens games. However, even though the FA ban prevented them playing at grounds and clubs affiliated to the FA, the Dick, Kerr ladies continued to play football around the world becoming unofficial World Champions in 1937 and having unrivalled success until the team disbanded in 1965 leaving behind a glittering legacy.