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Photo of Lily Broadhead

Lily Broadhead

Member of the Women’s Police Service
Birthplace Yorkshire Barnsley Place of Death Yorkshire Barnsley Date of Birth: May 31, 2022


Information supplied through Research Project led by Nigel Crompton.

Name: Lily Broadhead
DoB: 31 May 1891
Place of birth: Barnsley, Yorkshire
Parents: Walter and Eliza (nee Littlewood)
Parental Home: Wood Nook, Birdwell, Worsbrough, Yorkshire
Siblings: George Walter (1884-1947) Edith (1887-1951) Frederick (1889-1958) Arthur (1892-1960) Tom (1896-1954) Clara (1899-1985) Annie (1899-1899) Frank (1903-1986) Herbert (1908-1983)
Spouse: Never married
Date of Wedding: Not applicable
Children: Not applicable
Marital home(s) : Not applicable
Employment: Kitchenmaid
1911 Census: Selaby Hall, Gainford, Darlington
Date of death: 1978
Location: Barnsley, South Yorkshire

Gretna details
Name: Lily Broadhead
Clock No: N/K
Date joining: Not known
Date leaving: Not known but suspect 1919
Addresses: Both No1 & No2 Women’s Police Barracks at Gretna
Rank on start: PC
Promotion: None found
Career after: Borough of Stoke on Trent Police (appointed Autumn 1921)
1921 Census : Queen Anne’s Lodge, Wentworth Castle Estate, Worsbrough. Clerk in Colliery, Hound Hill, Keresforth Hall Road, Barnsley

Addresses after Gretna
1939 – 57 Abbey Terrace, Hanley, Staffordshire

Additional information

Lily’s family lived and worked around the Wentworth Castle Estate in Yorkshire. Her father Walter was a forester and gamekeeper for many years. In 1902 Captain Bruce Vernon Wentworth inherited the Castle and it was not until 1946 he sold the estate to Barnsley Council. By the time Walter retired he was head gamekeeper. Interestingly Lily appears not to have sought work locally in domestic service as she is on the 1911 census shows as being a kitchen maid employed by Frank Stobart, Selaby Hall, Gainford, Darlington. Frank Stobart died in 1918 but we don’t know when Lily started at Gretna or when she joined the Women Police Service or where she trained. Her name appears on the petition sent to Winston Church, Minister on Munitions by WPS members at Gretna in late 1918. After leaving Gretna she moved back home, becoming a clerk in a local colliery before applying to join the Stoke on Trent Police in late summer/ autumn 1921. She stayed in Stoke serving mostly in and around Hanley for many years before retiring in 1952 and settling back in Yorkshire where she died in early 1978. There is a photo of Lily on purportedly in a police uniform but the cap badge does not have the Kings crown which police cap badges should have, including the Women Police Service. It is possible therefore the Badge is for the special constabulary’s women’s section Lily was in command of in Stoke on Trent during the Second World War but again this has not been confirmed which was a round badge without
a King’s crown.

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