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Author Topic: Bevin boys  (Read 12639 times)

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Re: Bevin boys
« Reply #3 on: August 25, 2011, 13:10:54 »
We had a couple of helmets given to Newhaven Museum by an ex Bevin boy. Not much better than thick, oiled card, I doubt they would qualify as a "bump" cap now

Offline peterchall

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Re: Bevin boys
« Reply #2 on: August 25, 2011, 12:35:45 »
This does not answer whether any Bevin Boys served in Kent, but it may help to narrow the search to know that the scheme ran from December 1943 until 1948.

10% of conscripts to the armed forces were chosen at random to work in the mines. They tended to be stigmatised because it had been the practice to send conscientious objectors against military service down the mines, and it was assumed by many that the Bevin Boys were ‘conchies’. They were named after Ernest Bevin, who was wartime Minister for Labour. (Wikepedia)

Ernie Bevin was General Secretary of the Transport and General Workers’ Union when he was appointed by Winston Churchill on the theory that if a major union leader was responsible for organising labour there would be less likelihood of labour disputes; a case of "Poacher turned Gamekeeper"! He was actually made a government minister before it was realised that constitutionally he should be an MP – to put this right a new Parliamentary Constituency was created, to which he was elected unopposed. Can you imagine what the media would make of such a ‘fiddle’ today? Sorry if that’s gone off topic, but I thought it might be interesting background.
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Bevin boys
« Reply #1 on: August 25, 2011, 11:40:20 »
I heard a radio programme about the Bevin boys, the conscription and the way they were sometimes treated by society, and not recognised for thier duties until Gordon Brown was in office.
It sounds like these guys really did " dig for victory", can you imagine what would have happened if coal had run out in the war years?

This subject is a facet of world war two I knew nothing about untill recently and a forum search returned nothing.

Were there Bevin boys serving in Kent during WW2 and any recognition, plaques etc ?

Looking forward to your replies.


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