Bevin Boys

This is the story of the Bevin Boys, young men who were conscripted to work down the mines thanks to a scheme created by the wartime Minister for Labour and National Service, Ernest Bevin. The conditions in which they were employed were dangerous - at times potentially deadly - yet many of them were branded as cowards for not going off to fight. They didn't get medals when they were demobbed and, for many years, their efforts during World War II were forgotten. Here, some of the surviving Bevin Boys remember their time mining for their country.

The Bevin Boys Association was formed in 1989 to recognise the contribution the miners made to their country during the war. In 1998, representatives from the association were allowed to take part in the Remembrance Day Parade at the Cenotaph for the first time.

↗ Originally broadcast 10 May 1983.

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