Focus On... Women in Uniform
 
* The Almeric Paget Military Massage Corps - Introduction  
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Introduction
Nurses in the Crimea
Nurses in the British Army
A.P.M.M.C.

1. Introduction

2. Profile

3. Sources

Scottish Women's Hospitals
Women's Royal Naval Service
Women in WWII
Links
Credits
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Massage for our wounded soldiers: Tommy has the best of everything. Daily Sketch 5th December 1914. Imperial War Museum , Department of Printed Books: Women's Work Collection - Ref: BRCS 25.6/25 Massage for our wounded soldiers: Tommy has the best of everything. Daily Sketch 5th December 1914. Imperial War Museum, Department of Printed Books : Women's Work Collection - Ref: BRCS 25.6/25
View full image Almeric Paget Military Massage Corps. Coat and Skirt. Imperial War Museum, Department of Printed Books : Women's Work Collection - Ref: BRCS 25.6/21. Opens in a new window - 70kSee more
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The Almeric Paget Massage Corps was started in August 1914 by Mr and Mrs Almeric Paget. The Pagets funded 50 fully trained masseuses to be sited in the principal Military Hospitals in the UK, beginning in early September 1914. The service was such a success that the staff numbers were quickly increased to over 100. The Honourable Essex French was appointed Honourable secretary to the corps.

The work was hard, starting at 9am with a 30 minute lunch break and a 10 minute tea break at 2.15. Each masseuse would see 30-40 patients per day and provide treatments that included massage, hydrotherapy, electrotherapy and “… stimulating muscles with the ‘Bristow coil’ or subjecting a limb to interrupted galvanism, ironization or a Schee bath, diathermy or radiant heat”. Miss Sarah Chuck, matron-in-charge at Alderhey hospital

In November 1914 the A.P.M.C. set up a Massage and Electrical Out-Patient Clinic at 55 Portland Place, London for the treatment of wounded officers and men, again wholly financed by the Pagets. The property at Portland Place was loaned by Lady Alexander Paget. Throughout the war an average of 200 patients per day benefited from the services of the clinic.

Almeric Paget Military Massage Corps. Coat and Skirt. Imperial War Museum, Department of Printed  Books : Women's Work Collection - Ref: BRCS 25.6/21 Almeric Paget Military Massage Corps. Coat and Skirt. Imperial War Museum, Department of Printed Books : Women's Work Collection - Ref: BRCS 25.6/21
View full image Almeric Paget Military Massage Corps. Coat and Skirt. Imperial War Museum, Department of Printed  Books :  Women's Work Collection - Ref: BRCS 25.6/21. Opens in a new window - 25kSee more
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Sir Alfred Keogh, Director-General Army Medical Service, inspected the clinic in March 1915 and the service subsequently became the model for all the massage and electrical departments in convalescent hospitals and command depots throughout the UK. A grant to fund the expansion was also provided and the first convalescent camp opened at Eastbourne with over 3000 patients, 500 of whom were massage cases.

The War Office officially recognised the corps in early 1915 by making it the official body to which all masseurs and masseuses engaged for service in military hospitals should belong.

The word “military” was added to the corps’ title in December 1916 and in January 1919 A.P.M.M.C. became known as the Military Massage Service by Army Council Instruction.

Until early 1917 members of the corps were only required to serve in the UK, but from that date onwards service overseas was an option. A total of 56 masseuses served in France and Italy between January 1917 and May 1919.

In total 3,388 women and men served in the A.P.M.M.C., with a peak membership of 2000 in 1919.

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