A PLAQUE has been installed to honour the heroic women workers at Barrow Shipyard during the Second World War.

Barrow Shipyard Women has unveiled the memorial on the gates outside St John’s Church on Barrow Island.

Ashleigh Bartlett-Needham, the co-ordinator for Barrow Shipyard Women, said it would be a lasting tribute to the workers.

She said: “It’s shocking that there are no real stories regarding the women at the shipyard.

“They played a vital role in the war effort and they need to be recognised.”

During the war, the shipyard produced two aircraft carriers, two cruisers, an aircraft repair ship, 12 destroyers, 112 submarines and 35 various transport vessels.

Production was so quick that a submarine was constructed every two weeks.

Mrs Bartlett-Needham said story collecting had been eye-opening.

She said: “Our project is aimed for people to tell stories about the workers, and some of them have been very interesting.

“There are several fascinating stories, including one woman who lost her hair after getting caught in a machine.”

Reverend Andy Batchelor, vicar at St John’s Church, said it was a no-brainer to install the plaque.

He said: “When we were approached by Ashleigh with regards to the plaque it seemed appropriate.

“The church is within the shipyard grounds so it is very fitting.”

He added: “The church has a good connection and it seemed right that the workers have that recognition.

“I ran the idea by the church council and they quickly approved, which was excellent.”

Mrs Bartlett-Needham paid tribute to the church and thanked for the acceptance.

She said: “We wanted to find a suitable place for the plaque to go and St John’s Church kindly said yes.

“We can’t thank Reverend Andy Batchelor enough and we are very grateful.”