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Married Officers (Servant Allowance)

Volume 465: debated on Tuesday 17 May 1949

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asked the Secretary of State for War what servant allowance is payable to married officers, serving at home or abroad, who cannot have the assistance of a batman owing to the fact that married quarters are not available.

On the introduction of the post-war code of pay and allowances on 1st July, 1946, servant allowance as a separate emolument was abolished and for married officers became absorbed into marriage allowance. Since that date married officers accompanied by their families serving at home or abroad, and whether living in or out of quarters, have accordingly not been eligible for any servant allowance when batman service in kind at public expense is not available.

I cannot quite understand the right hon. Gentleman's answer. Does it mean that if a married officer is so unlucky as not to be able to live in married quarters, as very many officers are unable to do, he cannot get the use of a batman and cannot have a servant allowance? Is not that a most anomalous situation?

They have the servant allowance, which was incorporated into the revised pay and allowances, an arrangement reached some time ago. They cannot have the services of a batman.

Could not the officers who find it a hardship to be without batmen, be provided with bowlers?