A museum is providing an online talk on the work of pioneering female engineer Dorothée Pullinger who built the Tongland Factory near Kirkcudbright in the 1920s.

She was a key member of the Women’s Engineering Society when it was founded in 1919 and went on to become director and manager at Galloway Motors Limited.

The Pullinger talk is one of a series of lockdown events being organised by the the Devil’s Porridge Museum at Eastriggs.

Museum manager Judith Hewitt said that although they have had to delay re-opening they are doing what they can to keep activities happening “in difficult times for everyone”.

She added: “We’ve just launched a new series of free online talks. Each talk will be on a different topic.

“The first will be on Dorothée Pullinger – a pioneering female engineer who built the Tongland Factory near Kirkcudbright in the 1920s. It was there that the Galloway Car was built as a car made by ladies for ladies.”

Dorothée Pullinger.
Dorothée Pullinger.

The acclaimed French engineer is also famed for her time at the former Arrol-Johnston factory in Dumfries.

She started her career as an apprentice at Arrol’s factory in Paisley before becoming director and manager at Galloway Motors Limited – which produced the Galloway motor car, one of Scotland’s first production line automobiles.

Small and light and fitted with a smaller steering wheel, raised seat and lower dashboard, The Galloway was made at the Tongland factory which was part of a ladies’ engineering college founded by Dorothée to inspire women before the move to Heathhall in 1923.

She was awarded an MBE for management of female munition workers during the First World War and was called again to advise government and industry on women in engineering during World War Two.

The talk starts at 7pm on Monday, January 25, and tickets can be obtained through Eventbrite or the museum’s Facebook page.

Judith said: “Following that, we have a talk on February 15 on Love in Wartime and one on March 22 on female engineers in Dumfries and Galloway.

“We hope these free talks will be of interest and serve our community well in these dark, cold (and possibly, lonely) winter evenings.”

If you don’t use Facebook or Eventbrite, you can email: [email protected] or phone 01461 700021 to book a place at one of these talks.

A full list of talks are available at https://www.devilsporridge.org.uk/free-online-talks