Definition of Bevin boy in English:

Bevin boy


  • (during the Second World War), a young man of age for National Service selected by lot to work as a miner.

    • ‘In another you can see the Bevin boys, the miners who ensured Britain did not run out of coal during the war.’
    • ‘Bevin Boys are often known as the "Forgotten Conscripts".’
    • ‘Miners' sons were forced down the pits, and from December 1943 Bevin boys were employed.’
    • ‘With the ending of the order for prosecution of Bevin boys for non-attendance it became impractical to retain the compulsory labour force.’
    • ‘He was immortalised in the ‘Bevin boys’, an alternative to National Service in which men from different backgrounds, including public schools, were conscripted to go down the mines.’


Named after Ernest Bevin (see Bevin, Ernest).