The headcount of Army Legal Services has more than doubled in the past 30 years, its chief told an event held at the Law Society last week to commemorate solicitors who served in the first world war.

Major-General Mike Conway, who retires next year, said the nature and scope of legal work in the army have changed significantly since he joined in 1985. While the number of soldiers has fallen to fewer than 100,000, the number of lawyers has risen from 50 in 1985 to more than 100.

Conway said: ‘The role of the legal adviser is crucial. Almost all the things the army does have legal implications, from handling a court martial to handling a captured person.’