The Ministry of Defence (MoD) has accepted condemnation from the former head of the Army as “informed criticism” and conceded “there is more we can do”.
General Sir Mike Jackson retired in August and this week hit out at soldiers’ wages and accommodation when he deliverred the annual Dimbleby lecture.
“Not much over £1,000 a month for the private soldier for what he or she is doing on operations is hardly an impressive figure,” he said.
He also spoke of a “Kafka-esque situation whereby the MoD congratulates itself on achieving an accommodation improvement plan defined by itself on what it calls affordability, but which is far from what is defined by the needs of soldiers and their families”.
A spokesman for the MoD said Jackson was fully entitled to express his opinion about the Army.
“While we do not agree with everything Sir Mike has said, we are always the first to recognise – for example, in relation to medical services and accommodation – that although we have delivered real improvements, there is more we can do,” the spokesman said.
“We are always striving to make things better for our Forces and we are always open to informed criticism.”