Between 1914 and 1918, more than a million women were added to the workforce in Britain, at least 600,000 of these in industry. Women were recruited under strict conditions that they did not actually replace the men, they were expected to return to their traditional roles in the home, after the war had ended.
Many women, often from lower class families, were recruited into munition factories making gun shells, explosives, aircraft and other materials that supplied the war. Working conditions were dangerous, with daily exposure to toxic chemicals and explosives.
WWI US Propaganda Poster