Master of Commerce (Hons.)
Department of Accountancy and Legal Studies
Funnell, Warwick N., Parliament and the British army: the structure of financial control, 1846-1899, Master of Commerce (Hons.) thesis, Department of Accountancy and Legal Studies, University of Wollongong, 1987. https://ro.uow.edu.au/theses/2276
Al though ultimately victorious in the Crimean War ( 1854-56), the performance of the British Army had been so disappointing that the government at the time was compelled to investigate the causes of military dalliance. Apart from expected and repeated references to embarrassments of strategy, tactics and command, concern was expressed by the investigating committees over deficiencies in military financial and supply management. At the time, and in concert with these findings, the British Army was insistent that its performance in the field was deleteriously affected both by excessive economy in military spending and by the means with which Parliament exercised control over military spending.
After the Civil War and military reign of Cromwell (1642-1658) and the Revolution of 1688 Parliament had determined that it could effectively control the administration of the British Army through its control of the Nation's purse. Thus all matters related to military finance were given into the hands of civilian representatives of Parliament. For over two centuries the army was to have almost no say in its finances.
In the latter half of the 19th century Parliamentary surveillance of military spending was strengthened with improvements in government accounting . In particular the wider use of audits carried out by the Exchequer and Audit Department on behalf of Parliament extended Parliamentary control over military finance. At the same time the military were given almost complete control over their administration.