Military chiefs face home help cuts

Updated: 
Ministry of Defence signSenior military officers are to be ordered to reduce spending on domestic staff and luxuries for their grace-and-favour homes, it was reported.

The cuts are among new moves designed to save the Ministry of Defence (MoD) £5 million a year, according to the Mail on Sunday.

The top 26 Army, Royal Navy and Royal Air Force chiefs are currently allowed to claim back the full cost of furnishing their taxpayer-funded homes with antiques, the newspaper said.

However they will now have to shop for any furniture and fittings at high street retailers such as Ikea and John Lewis, it added.

They will also be able to reclaim only the costs of five hours of 'domestic assistance' a week, rather than the current average of 25 hours.

The newspaper quoted a senior Whitehall official as saying: "It's not fair for lower ranks to suffer cutbacks while their commanders live in the lap of luxury at a time of austerity. Savings must be made at the senior levels of the military."

An MoD spokeswoman said: "As part of our work to identify efficiencies, we have undertaken a comprehensive review into the provision of domestic assistance and hospitality, and will be publishing guidance to all three Services."

The guidance is expected to be published on Monday.
© 2011 Press Association

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