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Over 700,000 British soldiers died in WW1 and almost every one of those men was entitled to a War Gratuity from the British Government.  These War Gratuities are recorded in the Soldiers’ Effects Registers* however viewing these little known registers is just the start of your journey.

WW1 research can be difficult, over 60% of WW1 British Army service records were destroyed in 1940 along with millions of pages of army records. Thankfully the Soldiers’ Effects Registers survived and with these our unique War Gratuity calculator allows you the unrivalled chance to unlock the details shown in the Registers and recover information that is otherwise lost to history.

WarGratuity.uk do not hold copies of the actual Soldiers’ Effects Registers however we provide the unique means to interpret these Registers and understand them in the wider context of WW1 research.

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  • Access to free content regarding the War Gratuity
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  • Online War Gratuity calculator
  • Access to our specialist War Gratuity forum.
  • Army Order details relevant to the War Gratuity
  • Pages of additional information regarding the War Gratuity and how it worked
  • Access to premium content regarding the War Gratuity
  • Online War Gratuity calculator
  • Access to our specialist War Gratuity forum.
  • Army Order details relevant to the War Gratuity
  • Pages of additional information regarding the War Gratuity and how it worked
  • Access to premium content regarding the War Gratuity
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(* Soldiers’ Effects Registers are currently held by the National Army Museum but digitised by Ancestry.co.uk)

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War Gratuity
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What is the War Gratuity ?

What is the War Gratuity ?

The war gratuity was created in December 1918, and introduced in January 1919, as a payment to be made to those men who had served in WW1 for a period of 6 months or more home service (or for any length of service if a man had served overseas).  It was paid alongside the Service Gratuity.

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What is the Service Gratuity ?

For some time prior to the start of World War One a Service Gratuity had been payable to those men who had served as regular soldiers and had been discharged. During the war this gratuity was paid alongside the War Gratuity.

This gratuity made payment of £1 for each year or part year of military service . This gave roughly half a week’s worth of the average wage for each qualifying year of military service and was intended to assist a man back in to civilian life. A guaranteed minimum payment of £2 was paid out if a man died or he was discharged due to disablement.

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What are the Soldiers’ Effects Registers ?

The Soldiers’ Effects Registers rank as one of the most important and complete remaining records sets from WW1. These registers were created pre-war by the Effect’s branch of the War Office to record the monetary effects of deceased and insane soldiers. At the outbreak of war it was decided that the Effect’s Branch would continue their role and, with a massive expansion in staff, they continued their work.

The use of the  Soldiers’ Effects Registers for War Gratuity payments came about presumably because they provided a central register of estates and the Effect’s Branch had a ready supply of experienced staff.

A similar set of registers would once have existed in respect of those men who were discharged by the Army to show wages and  War Gratuity. These registers were administered by the Regimental Paymaster‘s for each unit however it is not apparent if any of these registers still survive and thus they make the surviving Soldiers’ Effects Registers even more important.

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