Forces Pay

So then Always - when you going to apply for a job with the Armed Forces Pay Review Body then?


Unfortunately not: I'm too biased Silver!

I am just thinking about some arguments that might be presented in any future campaign for change. One strong one you could borrow from the House of Commons is the justification for their own generous pension provisions applying to yourselves. The important thing being to carefully craft your argument around the facts and avoid being emotional or sounding bitter. In order words a dispassionate case in favour of similarly favourable treatment.

higthepig said:
My son was recently Paid £25,000 to sign on for an extra year, after tax it was £14,800, plus he lost his family credit or whatever its called, £25,000 should mean £25,000 should it not? they wanted him.

It does seem a bit rich to offer him £25K for it only to turn out to be substantially less. So Hig will you be writing to you MP about this?* Are any services/ex-services organisations doing anything? If not, why not?

*I've PM'd you about this.

More on Forces pay (letters) in today's Times...,,59-2356590,00.html

The King's shilling won't sustain our soldiers

Sir, Libby Purves’s comment on army pay (“A man’s job on a boy’s salaryâ€, Sept 12) was welcome. Many army families find it very difficult to make ends meet because of the disgracefully low basic salaries awarded to junior soldiers: £13,866 for a private compared with £19,918 for an 18-year-old trainee firefighter, who is also paid overtime.
This year army families have also had to face above-inflation increases to the charges they have to pay for (often poor quality) accommodation, as well as having to pay council tax. Soldiers’ homes are generally situated in isolated rural garrisons where there are few opportunities for their families to work; high rates of unemployment are compounded by a lack of affordable childcare. Schools struggle to accommodate the high mobility of army families but receive no extra support or recognition from the DfES. NHS dentists cannot accommodate army families, who cannot afford the cost of private dental care.

As Libby Purves says, “politicians have a massive duty of care towards the military†and that includes paying soldiers a decent wage.

Chairman, Army Families Federation

Sir, I joined the Army in 1954, serving for 31 years and retiring as a major in 1985. I joined the Civil Service, and 12 years later my pay was four times what it had been in the last year of my Army service. But, unlike my civilian counterparts, I had started a mortgage at the age of 38. Most of my friends and family were almost finished paying theirs.

There is no doubt that the standards of loyalty, dedication and professionalism in our Armed Services are as high as anything you would find in civilian life. However, if the Government continues to ignore this message then we should not be surprised if our servicemen and women vote with their boots.

Camberley, Surrey

Sir, A soldier is not paid by the hour, he is paid by the day: 365 days per year, whether he is being shot at in Afghanistan, lying on his bed in barracks or clubbing in Ibiza on leave.

I served as a commissioned officer in the RAF and my son is currently preparing to deploy to Iraq. In my experience, few servicemen complain about pay; rather they complain about kit. My son would be safer travelling through the streets of Basra in the new, heavily-armoured Cougar Mastiff fighting vehicle. Instead, he will have to make do with the old, lightly-armoured “Snatch†Land Rover. This is where our politicians don’t fulfil their duty to our armed forces.

Journalists should stop tabulating pay rates and campaign for better equipment.

Melksham, Wilts

Sir, Our Service personnel would at one time in history have been regarded as heroes. Today they are tools in political and economic wars; where the real commanders are so removed from the battlefield that there is no understanding between the person at the top and the soldier at the bottom.

Television adverts never mention the possibility of being killed, or what the actual rate of pay and conditions are. The package is made to seem attractive to those whose choices are limited. Surely this is a case of false advertising?


Sir, I have tried many times to point out the gross anomaly between the low level of pay for servicemen and women and that of people in similarly dangerous professions, whenever a policeman or a fireman complains to the media about their poor pay and conditions.

The pay and pension schemes of UK Service personnel are not as good as that of our former colonial cousins in Australia, Canada and New Zealand, let alone the US, and neither do we have access to naval and military hospitals, as is the case with American veterans.

Kesgrave, Suffolk


War Hero
Going back to the tax issue, I was once told that the reason tax is paid on deployment is that RN warships are soverign territory... but didn't cigs use to be tax free??

I'm confused.
If you are paid from a UK based employer then you are liable for tax on earnings. Its to do with the pension payable when you reach 65[at present ]

Do personnel serving in the Iraq areas get Local overseas allowances and possible hard lying money ??? I think they are excused paying the food and accomodation .

Yes it is a bit of a shite hourly rate for the job. A Serviceman is on call 24 hours a day wether he's dodging bullets or loafing ashore in a home billet.


War Hero
Of course if you raise the issue of pay with anyone of importance you will get told 2 words - "living expenses".

How Pay as you Dine will affect pay I'm not sure. Will pay increase to accomodate it?
I would imagine use of dining halls will decrease, especially ashore and on board jack will be more fussy what he eats, thats if they have to pay at sea, who knows with this Government.


War Hero
Not taking breakfast is a self inflicted wound, so you are therefore legally required to take breakfast yes? Under the new system we will be forced to pay for it... isn't that extortion? Which is illegal. Let's get the lawyers in :D
Ex-servicemen: Pensions

Mr. Mates: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if the Government will offer ex-servicemen who retired from the armed forces before 31 March 1973 the opportunity of buying their wives a forces family widows pension at half-rate on an actuarially calculated, no cost basis. [215086]

Derek Twigg: No. It would be difficult, in equity, to extend the half rate pension to widows whose husbands had left the service before 31 March 1973 because they had not contributed financially towards the improvement. It has also been the long-standing policy of successive governments that discretionary changes to improve the benefits offered by public service pensions schemes should be implemented for future service only.

HC Deb 15 July 2008 c306W