Concrete History

Concrete History

We are a group of film-makers and people with an interest in investigating and recording remarkable stories of women's achievements in Britain, with particular reference to their contribution in the UK during the second world war. By making films and visual installations on subjects like Waterloo Bridge/The Ladies Bridge we will capture a rich history that will inspire new generations.

Karen Livesey is a documentary film maker who comes from a politically active, campaigning background. She attended film school in Sheffield, studying cinematography and directing. This is when she first became interested in the gender divide – specifically, what separated “men’s work” from “women’s work”.  The inspiration for the Ladies Bridge documentary came from a story Karen heard in Sheffield: that Waterloo Bridge had been almost entirely rebuilt by women during the Second World War. The river boat pilots on the Thames knew the story, although they didn’t know how they knew it: as they passed under Waterloo Bridge tour guides would always tell tourists the story of the women who had worked on it. The story had been handed down orally, but did not appear to have been documented, and so wasn’t classed as “official history”. Karen was astonished that this wasn’t part of any official record, and so – somewhat optimistically, as she admits – started to try and track down the truth. 

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