'They pushed to break barriers': Women's role in transport celebrated

Festival exhibition celebrates women's role in Dundee's transport industry.

An exhibition celebrating the role women played in the transport industry has crossed the finish line and opened in Dundee.

The stories of Scottish women who worked in the industry and historical objects are on display at Dundee Transport Museum as part of the city’s Women’s Festival.

Among those being celebrated is the first female marine engineer in the Merchant Navy, Victoria Drummond.

Her great-niece Catherine Drummond-Herdman said it was a “very proud moment” for the family that Victoria’s work was being recognised.

Catherine said: “She didn’t think she was a woman pushing forward and boundaries.

“She just wanted to be an engineer, and wanted to be the chief engineer. She was definitely hampered because she was female and they didn’t want a woman in her position.”

It took Perthshire-born Victoria more than 30 attempts to be certified as a chief engineer due to her gender.

But her tenacity paved the way to allow other women to choose their own careers, including racing driver Chloe Grant, who is the youngest person involved in the exhibition.

She said: “As I progressed into the sport and I got into faster classes, I got more invested into the sport and knew I wanted it to be my career, rather than just a hobby.

“It means a lot to be here because I’ve been the little one looking up to these girls.

“Last year, I raced three other girls which is definitely an improvement and I’m seeing a lot more of the younger generation step up into the sport.”

Organisers of the exhibition are hoping that by seeing women in a range of roles throughout history, they’ll be able to inspire the next generation.

Irene Hallyburton, the curator of the exhibition, said: “I think the real thing we’re seeing is a sense of determination, it’s not allowing barriers to happen.

“The women represented, particularly Victoria Drummond and [bus driver] Pamela Scott, did things when it was normally men who did them.

“There were still barriers put in front of them and they pushed and pushed to break them.”

The exhibition will be open until March 27.

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