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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Army Pay


yelob

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Hi All,just curious about a number of things concerning pay and how was it paid out etc.I know the rate was a shilling a day

for a private but was it paid at the front or held until the soldier came out of the line?was there anywhere to spend it at the front line,were there 'shops' as such?did money have to be converted to local currency in order to be useful?

Also any info on the rates for other ranks would be interesting and what the modern equivalent might be.

Thanks,Liam

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If you do a search for £inancial Cost of War there is a link there to a calculator to campare a value from any given year to 2009

I used it to compare a bob a day to 2009 values the various measures gave values fro about £3.50 to about £25 depending on the criteria/model used

all the values were less than a Private gets today Which even today does not meet Minimum pay if yoy factor in a 24 hour day for a serviceman/women on ops. Even RSM on basic daily pay is less than minimum wage for 24/7 duty.

PS a seargh on forum should find info on rates of pay for other ranks.

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Hello Liam

If you put "Pay" into the Forum search engine, in this particular subforum, you should find quite a few threads on the subject.

Each soldier on active service was provided with a pay book showing his current rate of daily pay. He could draw cash from his company commander (who obtained it from an Army paymaster locally) in either sterling or francs, the rates of exchange being pretty constant in those days. The company commander would make the appropriate entry in the soldier's pay-book and then make a return to the regimental paymaster at home, who kept the sodier's pay account, and any adjustments could be made when the soldier went home.

Money could be spent in French/Belgian cafes, or in the ASC canteens (forerunners of NAAFI), or of course on home leave, or shops in French towns. Men could also but postal orders from Army post offices, and send them home to their families.

Ron

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Men could also but postal orders from Army post offices, and send them home to their families.

How did the family survive with the main earner away? at home he would have brought his wage packet home at the end of each week but whilst on military service was there a system to support his family?

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How did the family survive with the main earner away? at home he would have brought his wage packet home at the end of each week but whilst on military service was there a system to support his family?

Married men could make an 'allottment' of sixpence a day i.e. half their pay to their wife, this was enhanced to 12 shillings and sixpence with small amounts for each child. In addition (and some concern was expressed about this in Parliament) both the wife and children as young as 13 or 14 could earn over £2 per week in the munitions factory, or other jobs available because of the war and the absence of men. That's not to say there was not also hardship and controversy over the allocation of pensions etc. as ever there were winners and losers.

Ken

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Thanks everyone and Ron in particular.I did enter Pay and searched and got no results which is why I asked,

perhaps I did something wrong.

Regards,Liam

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Hello Liam

If you put "corps pay" (with the quotation marks) into the search engine you will find the thread Soldiers' Pay started by percy454. Alternatively, scroll down in this subforum, but the last entry was in January 2011 so it may be several pages down!

This should give you some answers to your questions.

Ron

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