On the ball: Women trailblazers, has now opened at SeaCity Museum, showcasing the history of women’s football in Southampton.  

Fascinating footballing stories will be told with photographs, trophies, kits, oral history and more, with many of the displayed items donated by local female players. 

This display is in celebration of Southampton’s role as Host City for the UEFA Women’s EURO 2022 and is possible thanks to funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund as part of a national cultural programme. The display will give an opportunity to learn about the origins of the city’s First World War factory teams in 1917, and later why the FA stopped women from playing. Discover how Southampton Common was the birthplace of Southampton Women’s FC – the most successful Southampton team ever – who played in 10 FA Cup Finals and won 8. And find out about Southampton’s connection to the earliest national England teams, both official and unofficial!

Past players from the 1971 to 1981 Southampton team, who travelled the world and dominated the game, have been working with curators at the museum to tell their stories of adversity and success, which you can listen to in the exhibition. 

Councillor Satvir Kaur, Leader of Southampton City Council, said: 

“Southampton has such a great connection to the history of women’s football, and we’re extremely proud of our ex-players who have been helping pull this display together. Teamed with welcoming the UEFA Women’s EURO 2022 tournament to Southampton this year, we really want to give them the recognition and platform they deserve.” 

This small display will be open in the Southampton Stories exhibit, supported by Arts Council England, SeaCity Museum, from 25 June to 12 October. You can get tickets to the whole of SeaCity Museum, or you can visit On the ball: Women trailblazers and Southampton Stories for £4.00 adults’ ticket, £3.00 children’s ticket and £3.50 for concessions (Students and over 65’s).  

If you’re interested to know more about these pioneering women, there will be a Q&A on Friday 8 July at Southampton City Art Gallery. Join football historian Jean Williams as she interviews some of the ex-Southampton Women’s FC and England players from 1970s and 1980s for a special one-off event and discover the story of the most successful side (with eight FA cups wins) Southampton has ever seen! Hear their astonishing stories of muddy pitches, international travel, lack of equipment, sexism, but above all their desire and passion for the beautiful game. 
The talk will begin at 7pm and end at 8.30pm at the Art Gallery Lecture Theatre. Get Tickets. 

Southampton will be hosting three group stage games of the UEFA Women’s EURO at St Mary’s Stadium on 7 July (Norway vs Northern Ireland), 11 July (Austria vs Northern Ireland) and 15 July (England vs Northern Ireland) 2022. Book tickets to be part of the action, here: www.uefa.com/womenseuro/ticketing/  


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