Ceremony held to mark 100 years since unveiling of Carlisle war memorial

The memorial bridge has been opened as a tribute to all those from Cumberland and Westmorland who gave their lives in the great war. Credit: ITV News

A ceremony has been held to mark 100 years since one of the best-known war memorials in the region was first unveiled.

The Rickerby Park cenotaph in Carlisle was built to commemorate those who died during World War I from Cumberland and Westmorland.

Now, it also honours those who died in subsequent conflicts.

Munitions workers battling the 'shell crisis' of 1915 were prime targets for enemy fire. Credit: ITV News

Over time, the role of local women in the war has been better understood as their stories have been told.

Gretna to Eastriggs, for example, was home to the biggest munitions facility in the British Empire at the time.

12,000 women worked there and it's widely acknowledged that their efforts contributed towards recognition of equal rights - especially around voting.

Munitions workers sites were routinely flattened by enemy bombs. Credit: ITV News

The cordite used in explosives had a very unfortunate side effect; whilst the sacrifices of soldiers are well-documented, the efforts of munitions workers stained yellow by toxic chemicals like cordite is a story few people know about.

Although many of the people who swapped their domestic lives for the assembly line were spared the trauma of the trenches, their jobs were nonetheless very dangerous.

Those who were spared were in just as much danger as those in the trenches - facing daily risks by handling explosive chemicals that they could have contracted potentially fatal diseases from.

For some, the effects of their work were immediately visible. The Canary Girls earned their nickname from the shade of yellow that stained their skin and hair.