British Army Pay Rates 1914

"In late 1914 and early ’15 there was this patriotic fervour which was designed to induce young men to enlist and join the army and go to France and fight the Germans. At that time, there was organised recruitment and on the fronts of public buildings – town halls and so on – there were replicas of thermometers, graduated, showing the number of men enlisting in the various battalions and formations. And there was competition amongst these to see who could push up the highest total in the given time. And I well recall on the Manchester Town Hall, for instance, these thermometers for recruitment in the pals, Manchester Pals battalions. And there were thousands and thousands of young men who joined up in that way."  Tom Bromley on IWM

Posters, films and public appeals urged the men of Britain to do their patriotic duty:

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IWM PST 0311, PST 2734, PST 0961


Minimum daily rates of pay for typical ranks or appointments of all arms. All rates in Shillings (s) and Pence (d):

Officers

Cavalry of the Line, Irish Horse, King Edward’s Horse and Yeomanry
Lieutenant-Colonel 29s 6d
Major 17s 0d
Captain 13s 6d
Lieutenant 9s 6d
Second Lieutenant 8s 6d
Quartermaster
11s 6d

Royal Horse Artillery  
Lieutenant-Colonel 29s 9d
Major 18s 6d
Captain 15s 0d
Lieutenant 10s 6d
Second Lieutenant 9s 6d
Quartermaster 11s 6d

Royal Field Artillery and Mountain Artillery
Lieutenant-Colonel 28s 0d
Major 16s 0d
Captain 13s 6d
Lieutenant 9s 6d
Second Lieutenant 8s 6d
Quartermaster 10s 6d

Royal Garrison Artillery     plus Armament Pay                                                          
  
Lieutenant-Colonel 24s 6d 5s 0d
Major 16s 0d 3s 6d
Captain 13s 6d 2s 0d
Lieutenant 9s 6d 1s 0d
Second Lieutenant 8s 6d *1s 0d
Quartermaster 10s 6d 0s 0d
* payable only if certified by Commanding Officer with regard to the Second Lieutenant’s technical efficiency

Royal Engineers plus Engineer pay
plus Engineer Pay
Lieutenant-Colonel 21s 0d 14s 0d
Major 16s 0d 9s 0d
Captain 13s 6d 4s 0d
Lieutenant 9s 6d 3s 0d
Second Lieutenant 8s 6d *1s 0d
Quartermaster 10s 6d 2s 0d
* plus a further 1s 6d payable only if certified by Commanding Officer with regard to the Second Lieutenant’s technical efficiency

Royal Flying Corps
Wing Commander 38s 0d
Squadron Commander 33s 0d
Wing Adjutant 27s 0d
Flight Commander 25s 0d
Equipment Officer 24s 6d
Flying Officer 20s 6d
Assistant Equipment Officer 12s (some 12s 6d)
Quartermaster 12s 6d
These rates include flying pay if issued continuously

Infantry
Lieutenant-Colonel 28s 0d
Major 16s 0d
Captain 12s 6d
Lieutenant 8s 6d
Second Lieutenant 7s 6d
Quartermaster 10s 0d


Army Service Corps plus Corps Pay
Lieutenant-Colonel 21s 0d 6s 0d
Major 15s 0d 4s 0d
Captain 12s 6d 3s 0d
Lieutenant 8s 6d 3s 0d
Second Lieutenant 7s 6d 3s 0d
Quartermaster 10s 6d 0s 0d

Royal Army Medical Corps
Lieutenant-Colonel 30s 0d
Major 23s 6d
Captain 15s 6d
Lieutenant *14s 0d
Quartermaster 10s 6d
* Temporary Lieutenants serving under civil contracts receive 24s 0d per day

Army Veterinary Corps
Lieutenant-Colonel 30s 0d
Major 20s 0d
Captain 15s 6d
Lieutenant 13s 8d
Quartermaster 11s 6d

Warrant Officers, NCOs and men

Cavalry Household Cavalry/Cavalry of the Line
Corporal-Major or Sergeant-Major 5s 10d 5s 4d
Quartermaster Corporal-Major or Quartermaster-Sergeant 4s 6d 4s 4d
Squadron Corporal-Major or Squadron Sergeant-Major 4s 6d 4s 4d
Squadron Quartermaster- Corporal or Squadron Quartermaster-Sergeant 3s 6d 3s 4d
Corporal-of-Horse or Sergeant 3s 0d 2s 8d
Corporal 2s 8d 2s 0d
Trooper or Private 1s 9d 1s 2d
additional proficiency pay is payable if the soldier fulfils certain conditions as to service and qualification: rates 3d or 6d per day, according to proficiency.


Royal Artillery Horse, Field and Mountain/Garrison Artillery
Master Gunner 1st Class 6s 0d
Master Gunner 2nd Class 5s 8d
Sergeant-Major *5s 10d 5s 10d
Master Gunner 3rd Class 4s 6d
Quartermaster-Sergeant *4s 2d 4s 2d
Battery Sergeant-Major or Battery Quartermaster-Sergeant *4s 2d 4s 2d
Company Sergeant-Major 4s 0d
Company Quartermaster-Sergeant 3s 9d
Sergeant *3s 2d 3s 2d
Corporal *2s 6d 2s 6d
Bombardier *2s 3d 2s 3d
Gunner **1s 2.5d 1s 2.5d
Driver ***1s 2.5d 1s 2.5d
additional proficiency pay is payable if the soldier fulfils certain conditions as to service and qualification: rates 3d or 6d per day, according to proficiency.
* plus 2d for Horse Artillery
** plus 1.5d for Horse Artillery
***plus 0.5d for Horse Artillery

Royal Engineers
Sergeant-Major 6s 0d
Quartermaster-Sergeant 4s 6d
Troop, Company or Squadron Sergeant-Major 3s 9d
Troop, Company or Squadron Quartermaster-Sergeant 3s 9d
Sergeant 3s 3d
Corporal 2s 6d
Second Corporal 2s 2d
Sapper, Pioneer or Driver 1s 2d
in addition to these rates, Engineer Pay is issuable dependent on qualification, from 2d to 4s 0d per day

Royal Flying Corps (Military Wing)
Sergeant-Major 9s 0d
Flight Sergeant 7s 0d
Sergeant 6s 0d
Corporal 5s 0d
Air Mechanic 1st Class 4s 0d
Air Mechanic 2nd Class 2s 0d
in addition to these rates, flying pay is issuable to a qualified first-class pilot at 4s 0d per day and to a qualified second-class pilot at 2s 0d per day

Infantry Foot Guards/Infantry of the Line
Sergeant-Major 5s 2d 5s 0d
Quartermaster-Sergeant 4s 2d 4s 0d
Company Sergeant-Major 4s 2d 4s 0d
Company Quartermaster-Sergeant 3s 8d 3s 6d
Colour-Sergeant 3s 8d 3s 6d
Sergeant 2s 6d 2s 4d
Corporal 1s 9d 1s 8d
Private 1s 1d 1s 0d
additional proficiency pay is payable if the soldier fulfils certain conditions as to service and qualification: rates 3d or 6d per day, according to proficiency.

Military Police Mounted/Foot
Sergeant-Major 5s 10d 5s 6d
Quartermaster-Sergeant 5s 0d
Squadron Sergeant-Major 5s 0d
Squadron Quartermaster-Sergeant 4s 6d
Colour-Sergeant 4s 0d
Sergeant 3s 10d 3s 4d
Corporal 3s 0d 2s 4d
Private 2s 2d 1s 9d

Army Service Corps
Sergeant-Major 5s 6d
Company Sergeant-Major or Staff Quartermaster-Sergeant 4s 3d
Company Sergeant-Major (Mechanical Transport) 4s 11d
Company Quartermaster-Sergeant (Mechanical Transport) 4s 5d
Staff Sergeant 4s 0d
Sergeant 2s 7d
Sergeant (Mechanical Transport) 3s 3d
Corporal 2s 0d
Corporal (Mechanical Transport) 2s 6d
Second Corporal 1s 9d
Second Corporal (Mechanical Transport) 2s 2d
Driver or Private 1s 2d
additional proficiency pay is payable if the soldier fulfils certain conditions as to service and qualification: rates 3d to 1s 8d per day, according to proficiency.

Royal Army Medical Corps
Sergeant-Major 5s 6d
Quartermaster-Sergeant 4s 6d
Staff-Sergeant 4s 3d
Sergeant 2s 8d
Corporal 2s 1d
Private 1s 2d
additional proficiency pay is payable if the soldier fulfils certain conditions as to service and qualification: rates 4d to 1s 2d per day, according to proficiency

Army Veterinary Corps
Sergeant-Major 5s 4d
Staff-Sergeant 4s 4d
Sergeant 2s 8d
Corporal 2s 0d
Private 1s 2d
additional proficiency pay is payable if the soldier fulfils certain conditions as to service and qualification: rates 4d to 1s 0d per day, according to proficiency

Army Ordnance Corps
Armament or Armourer-Sergeant-Major 7s 0d
Sergeant-Major 5s 6d
Armament or Armourer-Quartermaster-Sergeant 6s 0d
Staff-Quartermaster-Sergeant 4s 3d
Armourer-Staff-Sergeant (at depot) 2s 6d
Armourer-Staff-Sergeant (not at depot) 4s 6d
Armament-Staff-Sergeant 4s 6d
Staff-Sergeant 4s 0d
Sergeant 2s 7d
Corporal 2s 0d
Private 1s 2d
additional proficiency pay is payable if the soldier fulfils certain conditions as to service and qualification: rates 3d to 1s 2d per day, according to proficiency

Army Pay Corps
Staff-Sergeant-Major 5s 6d
Staff-Quartermaster-Sergeant 4s 6d
Staff-Sergeant 4s 0d
Sergeant 3s 0d
Corporal 2s 0d
Private 1s 8d

This schedule of rates was later revised (13 December 1915)

British army war pay, 1917

The introduction of War Pay

  • Army Order 1 (1918) stated that of 29 September 1917 and for the remaining period of the war, the sum of one penny per day War Pay would be paid in respect of each complete year of the man’s service with the colours that had been rendered since the commencement of the war.
  • This was in addition to the man’s normal service pay.
  • By definition periods in reserve service did not count.
  • Any period of penal servitude or of imprisonment or detention of more than 28 days, and any period of continuous absence without leave exceeding 28 days, would not count towards the colour service accumulated.
  • War Pay did not apply to the men of the Non-Combatant Corps.
  • War Pay was not payable in arrears (that is, it began from 29 September 1917 and no pay was to be paid for prior periods).

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