Bevin Boys Training Centres

Centres were established at all the main coalfields where there was a labour shortage and were sited either at disused pits adaptable for training or at production pits where a training area could be segregated.

 

Eleven pits were finally selected:-

 

NORTH MIDLANDS REGION

Creswell Colliery, Derbyshire.

 

MIDLANDS REGION

Haunchwood Colliery, Nuneaton, Warwickshire.*

 

NORTH WESTERN REGION

Newton Colliery, Clifton, Lancashire.*

 

NORTH EASTERN REGION

Askern Main Colliery, Doncaster, Yorkshire.

Prince of Wales Colliery, Pontefract, Yorkshire.

Birley Colliery (East Pit), Woodhouse, Yorkshire.*

 

NORTHERN REGION

Morrison Colliery, Southmoor, Durham.

Horden Colliery, Durham.*

Cromlington Lamb Colliery, Northumberland.

 

SCOTLAND REGION

Newcockhall Colliery, Fife.

 

WALES REGION

Oakdale Colliery, Monmouthsire.

 

Collieries marked  * were opened by the end of 1943.

 

The eleven centres had each from 280 to 520 places.

 

Training was given in transport and haulage of coal.

 

In South Wales, where men were subsequently employed as assistants in or about the coal face, on repair work and underground haulage, the training was suitably varied.

 

Training time was apportioned, approximately as follows:

 

Physical training     - 25%

 

Class room work/   - 25%

visits to mines

 

Practical surface   - 20%

training

 

Underground          - 30%     

training 

 

The training week was 44 hours.

 

The weekly wage rate payable to trainees during Stage A training (general knowledge and background to coalmining operating) was the national minimum rate for surface workers in the industry.

 

This was:-

 

At age 17     - 39/6.

           17.5  - 41/6.

           18     - 44/-

           18.5  - 46/-

           19     - 48/-

           19.5  - 50/6.

           20     - 53/-

           20.5  - 55/-

           21     - 78/-

 

Stage A were, however, raised from 22 January 1944 to:-

 

At age 17      - 45/-

           17.5   - 47/6.

           18      - 60/-

           19      - 65/-

           20      - 70/-

           21      - 90/-

 

Durining Stage B training (or a fortnight's duration at designated pit) the men received the wage appropriate to the district for the occupation in which they were employed.

Bevin Boy Veteran Badge

 

Badge can be issued to men who were conscripted directly into the mines, 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.

The Bevin Boys scheme was introduced in 1942 by the then Minister for Labour and National Service, Ernest Bevin. The scheme ran between 1942 and 1948 and involved recruiting men to work in coal mines during and immediately following World War 2.

 

The badge is available to all surviving Bevin Boys and formally recognises their work in the UK coalfields during and immediately after World War II. The badge can only be issued posthumously to the widows of men who died on or after 20 June 2007 and fall into the above category.

 

The application form for the badge can be found here:

 

 

or you can contact the Department of Energy and Climate Change,

who adminsiter the badge,

on 0300 068 5716

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© J L Swift/W Taylor MBE

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