|This month as we mark International Women's Day on Saturday 8 March - uncover the unique stories and experiences of women in times of conflict. Join us at one of our branches and online to discover more about the role women played in war.|
|Elizabeth 'Dolly' Shepherd: British pioneer balloonist and parchutist|
|In 1904, waitress Elizabeth Shepherd joined Captain Auguste Guadron's display troupe and began making demonstration parachute jumps from hot air and gas balloons. She used her family nickname, Dolly, wore a navy blue knickerbocker suit and carried a silk Union Flag on every jump. Her daredevil nerve and flair made her the star of the show. She became known as the Parachute Queen.|
Early balloons and parachutes were difficult to control and often dangerous. In 1908, Dolly damaged her back while saving the life of a fellow performer. She stopped parachuting in 1913 after experiencing what she called a 'premonition of death'.
During the First World War, Dolly served in France as a driver mechanic with the Women's Auxiliary Army Corps. Despite her permanent back damage, she never lost her sense of adventure; she took a flight with the Red Devils display team aged 96.
Find out more about Dolly Shepherd and many other inspirational women in aviation at the AirSpace exhibition at IWM Duxford.
|Behind the scenes at IWM: Conservation in Action|
|Conserving our First World War Observation Tree|
Come behind the scenes with Rachel, one of our conservators, to find out more about the work she's been doing on the First World War observation post that is disguised as a tree.
The Observation Tree will be on display in IWM London's new First World War Galleries when we re-open in July 2014.
Our historian Louise MacFarlane also provides more insight into the history of the Observation Tree.
|HMS Belfast's rescue mission brings women and children on board|
|After the surrender of Imperial Japan in September 1945, HMS Belfast arrived in Shanghai, China to help evacuate the survivors of Japanese prisoner of war and civilian internment camps. Entire families were captured when the Japanese armed forces drove through the Far East in 1941 with women and children kept in separate camps from the men.|
Day and night, warships - HMS Belfast among them - transported the sick and dying to hospitals in Hong Kong. The crew of HMS Belfast also organised a party on board for the children held in the camps. The ship's company set up swings and roundabouts, and chocolate proved to be a big hit, which some children had never seen or tasted. In short supply, the men searched their lockers and gave out as much chocolate as they could find.
|Treat Mum on Mother's Day, Sunday 30 March, by buying her classic jewellery and accessories inspired by vintage 1940s fashion. All your purchases support IWM.|
Image 1 © IWM (Q98454); Image 2 © IWM (Q31088); Images 3 and 4 Film stills © IWM; Image 5: © IWM (Q2659); Image 6 © Octopus Publishing Group; Image 7 © (A38055); Image 8 © IWM; Image 9 © (COM1076); Image 10 © Crown copyright; Images 11-13 © IWM; Image 14: Scene from Battle of the Somme by Geoffrey Malins and John McDowell, 1916 © IWM (Q79501)
Terms and conditions for '100 Objects' giveaway:
UK entrants only. One entry per household. No cash alternative. Winners to be drawn Friday 14 March.
See our full competition terms and conditions online at iwm.org.uk.