Saturday, December 7 – 1918
The demobilisation of pivotal men begins on Monday, when about 1,500 men who are wanted immediately will reach England. Soldiers are to be released in the following order: – (1) Miners, (2) demobilisers, (3) pivotal men, (4) general demobilation on line not yet announced.
Miners have been coming back ever since the armistices was signed, and thousands of them are again in the pits. The demobilisers – then men who are to run the machinery of demobilisation throughout the country, at the Employment Exchanges and so on – have also been released in large numbers.
The rest of them (says the ‘Manchester Guardian’) are due at the beginning of next week. The miners to be immediately returned number something over 100,000.
The pivotal men are, of course, foremen, overlookers, and generally those upon whom the employment of large numbers of men and women depend. They have been selected, not by the demobilisation department of the Labour Ministry, but wherever possible by the trade organisation concerned in the industry.
For the first few days they will be landing at the rate of about 1,500 a day, and this number will steadily increase as the ports and railways are reorganised to deal with an inflow instead of an outflow of traffic, until they will be coming at the rate of 10,000 a day. The total number to be released is over 150,000.
They will be taken from the ports to dispersal camps, from which they will be distributed to their occupations, either immediately, or if they prefer it, after the allowed twenty-eight days’ furlough with pay and allowances from the army.
The big demobilisation will be at the rate of 40,000 a day.
(Liverpool Echo, 07-12-1918)