BLACK COUNTRY WOMEN  The legacy lives on ... BE INSPIRED

Miss K. Tearle

Miss ? Williams

The Midlands 1st Police Officers


In January 1918 the UK was very short of manpower, due

mainly to the sad loss of life of the men killed in the First

World War.

The women of the country had, during the war, taken on many

jobs previously the domain of their sons, husbands, fathers

and grandfathers. They had kept the country running and it

was no surprise that the Watch Committee received

deputations of local women's groups and clergy campaigning

for women to be appointed as police officers in the Walsall.

The motion was passed unanimously and for the first time,

women were recruited alongside men in the Midlands.


The first two women to be appointed were Katherine Tearle and a Miss Williams who has yet to be identified properly.


Both of these women had previously worked as Munitions Police officers, policing the munitions factories and the huge number of female munitions workers who manned the factories during WW1.

Katherine went on to become the first female sergeant, but very little is known about Miss Williams (not even her first name).

If you have any information about these brave women, please get in touch so that we can expand this entry and give them the credit they deserve.


9 May 2018 marked exactly 100 years since the introduction of female police officers in Walsall.

Willams & Tearle Walsall Policewomen .jp