Photograph of group of Land Army women (Catalogue reference: MAF 59/146)

This is a brief guide to researching records of the Women's Land Army. The original service records of the Women's Land Army have not survived. The National Archives has microfiche copies of alphabetical index cards from 1939 to c.1950 that contain some basic information about the women's service but no personnel records at all for the Women's Land Army in the First World War.

  • What do I need to know before I start?

    • Try to find out:

      • their maiden name, if the woman subsequently married
  • What records can I see online?

    • There are no online records at The National Archives relating to the Women's Land Army.

  • What records can I find in other archives and organisations?

    • Original alphabetical index cards (1939-1950)

      Contact the Imperial War Museum for a photocopy of an index card. The originals are not available for the public to view. They require the full name, date of birth, the address at the time of service, and the location of service if possible.

    • Oral history recordings

      Listen to some oral history recordings by members of the Women's Land Army on the Imperial War Museum website.

    • Records held locally

      Search the Access to Archives (A2A) and National Register of Archives (NRA) databases to find records held in local archives.

  • What other resources will help me find information?

Did you know?

The Women's Land Army was first created in January 1917, wound up in 1919, and then re-established shortly before the outbreak of the Second World War, in June 1939. It was disbanded again in 1950.

It was set up to help increase the amount of food grown within Britain.

At its peak in 1943 over 80,000 women from all backgrounds, the big cities as well as the countryside, were 'land girls'.

Surviving members of the Women's Land Army (or spouses or families of members who died after 6 December 2007) can apply for a commemorative badge from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs acknowledging the debt that the country owes them.

The index cards for Scotland are held by the National Archives of Scotland.