Friday, March 20, 2015
The Women's Timber Corps
The Women's Timber Corps (WTC) was a British civilian organisation created during the Second World War to work in forestry replacing men who had left to join the armed forces. Women who joined the WTC were commonly known as Lumber Jills.
Formed in 1942, the origins of the WTC go back to the First World War when the Women's Timber Service had been formed to help with the war effort. In 1940 to solve a labour shortage and an increased demand for timber the Forestry Commission started recruiting women both as forestry workers but also to work in sawmills. In 1942 responsibility passed from the Forestry Commission to the Home Timber Production Department of the Ministry of Supply and the women became part of the new corps.
As many of the women who had joined the Forestry Commission came from the Women's Land Army (WLA), the WLA took over the administration and recruitment for the WTC and although the WTC was officially part of the WLA it retained a separate identity. The uniforms were identical except that the WTC replaced the WLA felt hat for a beret and wore the WTC badge.