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The Bevin Boy Veterans 


Bevin Boys Badge
article below

 

The Bevin Boys   Banner
Courtesy Bevin Boy Veterans  .

Book of Remembrance
now totals 1147

 

Please address ALL enquiries to
The Bevin Boys 
c/o Warwick H. Taylor MBE
23 Great Cranford Street Poundbury
Dorchester
DT1 3SQ
Dorset

Contact details

Info (Tel) : 01305 261269

Warwick Taylor with the design for the badge
Bevin Boys veteran
Warwick Taylor

 

For more information contact Warwick Taylor, MBE.
Warwick is Vice President, Press Publicity, Public Relations. Author, Historian and Archivist.  He has a stock of a wide range of books on the subject of Bevin Boys written by him and others.

Warwick has indicated to me that he has lost many members over the past few years -

30 since beginning of December - including Harry Fowler, David Day, Peter Jackson

2 regions are no longer available
 

The Bevin Boys   
(read formation of Bevin Boys)
The Bevin Boys was formed in 1989 with a small membership of 32 in the Midlands area. Today the membership has grown to over 2000 from all over the United Kingdom and overseas.

  • We organise an annual reunion in Bournemouth covering the counties of Dorset, Hampshire and isle of Wight, Sussex and Wiltshire.
  • We assist with other regions of London and the Home Counties, the Midlands and South Wales.
  • If you are a Bevin Boy or a relative of a Bevin Boy then Warwick wants to hear from you.

The Bevin Boy Veterans is trying to trace all 48,000 Bevin Boy  conscripts, optants or volunteers who served in Britain's coal mines during and after World War Two - 1942 to 1948.

Brief History of Bevin Boys
(read
the Forgotten Conscripts of 60 years ago)
(sometimes incorrectly referred to as Bevan Boys)
As Britain was unable to import Coal during World War II, the production of coal from mines in Britain had to be increased. To meet this need it was decided by the Minister of Labour, Ernest Bevin, that a percentage of young men called up to serve in the forces should work in the mines. from 1942 to the end of the war one in ten of the young men called up were sent to work in the mines. This caused a great deal of upset as the many of the young men wanted to join the fighting forces and many felt that they were not valued. These conscript miners were given the nick name 'Bevin Boys'. Many suffered taunts as they wore no uniform and were wrongly assumed to be avoiding serving in the armed forces.

The application form for the badge is now available and can be obtained by calling the Service Personnel and Veterans Agency helpline on 0800 169 2277 or by visiting
http://www.veterans-uk.info
.

A Bevin Boys Badge can be issued to:
Men who were conscripted directly into the mines, known more generally as “ballottees”, those who opted for mine work in preference to joining the Armed Forces or those who were in the Armed Forces and volunteered to become miners during the period 1942- 1948 under the scheme instituted by Ernest Bevin, Minister of Labour and National Service.

Please note:
The Bevin Boy Veterans Badge is a survivors badge and can only be issued posthumously after the date of introduction – 20 June 2007. 
If your relative died before that date Warwick recommends that you consider 
The Bevin Boys Medal - see below.


The Bevin Boys scheme was introduced in 1942 by then Minister for Labour and National Service, Ernest Bevin, in response to an increasing shortage of labour in the coal mining industry. The scheme ran between 1942 and 1948 and involved recruiting men aged between 18 and 25 years to work in coal mines rather than serve in the armed forces. Some 48,000 men were either selected or volunteered under the scheme.

Energy Minister Malcolm Wicks MP said:

"I am calling on all surviving Bevin Boys to come forward to claim this unique veterans badge as a tribute to their sacrifices during and after the Second World War. These heroes in our community helped to keep the coal fields running during the war and in the post-war reconstruction of Britain."

"It is with honour and gratitude that we recognise their tremendous work with the award of this special badge. It is important that we never forget the sacrifices that were made both at home and abroad during the war. If you are a Bevin Boy, or you know someone who is, please come forward to claim this fitting tribute."

All Bevin Boys, be they ballottees, optants or volunteers, are eligible to apply. Applications will also be accepted from widows of Bevin Boys who passed away on or after the 20 June 2007, the date when the announcement of the badge was made. This is provided a copy of the marriage and death certificate are attached to the application form.

The first badges will be issued in March, to coincide with the 60th anniversary of the demobbing of the last Bevin Boy.

 

Bevin Boys Badge

Application Form:
http://veterans-uk.info/bevin_boys/bevin.pdf

Warwick Taylor is a war veteran with a difference. He didn't serve on the frontline, didn't fire a shot. His job was to serve at the coalface, with a shovel not a gun as his weapon.
The Dorset veteran is one of thousands of conscripted miners who have been honoured for their contribution to the war effort.
The government has just announced that a commemorative lapel badge will be awarded to the surviving five thousand veterans to mark their contribution to the war effort.
"It's taken many years of hard work to achieve this," explains Warwick, who is Vice President of the Bevin Boys  .
"We feel that we did just as an important job as those who were in the armed services."
The Bevin Boys inherited their name from Ernest Bevin, who was wartime minister of labour and national service.
In 1942, Bevin introduced a call up age for men to men to go into the mines instead of the armed services because there was such a shortage of coal.
Warwick was one of the recruits whose registration number was picked at random. At just 18 years old, he was forced to leave his home town of Harrow and head for the coal mines of South Wales.
"It was pretty grim. I didn't like it at the time, although I realise in hindsight how essential the job was of course."
Warwick was one of 48,000 Bevin Boys who were balloted to work deep underground, digging coal in order to power the production of tanks, ships and aircraft for the war.
Only 5,000 of these conscripted miners are still alive, and all are over 80 years old. They were only allowed to take part in the Remembrance Day celebrations as recently as 1998.
But the government has finally seen fit to accept the vital role the Bevin Boys played in the war effort, much to Warwick's delight.

 

 The Bevin Boys Medal

The Bevin Boys Medal was commissioned by the Bevin Boys   and as such is their official medal. Designed and made by Bigbury Mint in their Devon Workshop, the medal is made of hallmarked solid silver and supplied ready to wear.
A 3.00 donation will be made to the Bevin Boys   from the sale of each medal.
The Bevin Boys medal is available to Ballotees, Optants, Volunteers (or their next of kin) called up between 1942 and 1948. There is no minimum length of service to be eligible for this medal but we do ask that you provide details of the training colliery and name of colliery worked, if known

The Bevin Boys Medal is currently available from:

Bigbury Mint,
River Park,
Ermington,
Ivybridge,
Devon,
PL21 9NT

Telephone: 01548 830717
Fax: 01548 830046
E-mail: info@bigburymint.com

Office Hours: Monday to Friday 8.00am - 6.00pm
Saturday 9.00am - 1.00pm

 

 

 
 

 

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