Rebecca Welch will become the first female referee in the Premier League when she takes charge of Fulham against Burnley on December 23.
Welch became a referee in 2010, balancing the role alongside her job in the NHS.
In 2021, she was the first woman to be appointed to referee a match in the Football League for the Sky Bet League Two fixture between Harrogate and Port Vale.
History will be made in the Premier League this Christmas…
Rebecca Welch will become the competition's first woman referee and Sam Allison the first black official to take charge of a match for 15 years
— Premier League (@premierleague) December 14, 2023
Welch, who comes from Washington in Tyne and Wear, was also the first woman to referee matches in the Championship and third round of the FA Cup.
Last month she became the first female to act as fourth official in a Premier League game as part of the officiating team for Fulham against Manchester United.
During her career, Welch has also officiated high-profile matches in the Women’s Super League, twice refereeing the Women’s FA Cup final and she has also taken charge of international matches, including at the 2023 Women’s World Cup.