On 9 September 2019 we re-signed the Armed Forces Covenant for Derbyshire which pledges our commitment and support to the Armed Forces Community.
The Council has worked with a range of local partners to look at the provision, co-ordination and promotion of services to current and veteran armed forces personnel, particularly on issues including physical and mental health and wellbeing, employment and financial inclusion. This will help frontline officers to signpost veterans to a range of available support and identify other opportunities for veterans which could be offered by departments.
For the past 2 years we have included flyers in our Council Tax letters to all households in the district, giving information about the support we and other organisations can offer. As a result of this we have supported Armed Forces Community residents to access help and support with day to day living, including 15 visits between March and June this year resulting in:
- 2 referrals to Citizens Advice
- 4 referrals for Disabled Facilities Grants via Occupational Therapists
- a new boiler via the Warm Homes Fund
We have also provided advice to 3 residents on Trusted Traders and specific advice on damp and mould to 3 others.
Two former army pals have joined forces to help an ex-soldier find a new home. Richard Dixon, Housing Options Officer (Homelessness Prevention), worked with Matthew Ellmer, Regimental Casualty Officer for the Grenadier Guards, to help a fellow Guardsman find a house after he was threatened with homelessness.
Richard and Matthew both joined the Grenadier Guards, the infantry regiment of the Army, in 1984 before they were posted to different battalions, but it was only when Richard was interviewing the soldier about his predicament that he found out he knew the army officer helping him.
The soldier who suffers with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) was offered temporary accommodation and shortly afterwards was found a permanent council house. This case shows that by working in partnership with support services we can achieve positive outcomes for our ex-forces residents.
We produce an annual Newsletter with information for our Armed Forces Community residents.
As an employer, NEDDC provides an extra week’s paid leave for Armed Forces Community employees for military training as well as the potential for additional unpaid leave for armed forces duties subject to the needs of the service.
We have achieved the Bronze Award under Defence Employer Recognition Scheme which acknowledges employers who have provided exceptional support to the Armed Forces Community and defence by going above and beyond their covenant pledges.
We also have a dedicated page on the Forces Families Jobs website, which identifies training and employment opportunities for family members of currently serving UK military personnel.
Commemoration of Fred Greaves Victoria Cross, Killamarsh
A commemorative stone was laid at Killamarsh war memorial on 1st October 2017 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Killamarsh-born Fred Greaves’ award of the Victoria Cross in World War One for ‘most conspicuous bravery, initiative and leadership.’
On 4th October 1917 whilst serving in the 9th Battalion, The Sherwood Foresters (The Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire Regiment) during the Battle of Broodseinde, Acting Corporal Greaves captured an enemy machine gun position and later established defensive positions to protect comrades under attack from advancing forces.
The service was led by Rev Helen Guest and attended by Lt Col Duncan Jenkins (Royal Logistics Corps) HM Lord Lieutenant of Derbyshire Mr William Tucker, MP Lee Rowley and members of the public and NEDDC Chair Cllr Rosie Smith and Chief Executive Dan Swaine.
The event was organised by partners including Killamarsh Parish Council, Killamarsh Heritage Society, local traders, NEDDC and the local branch of the Royal British Legion.
Jack Parrot Awarded Legion d’Honneur
Grassmoor resident Jack Parrott has been awarded France’s highest honour, the Legion d’Honneur at a special ceremony at our Mill Lane offices. It was a double celebration for Jack (97), who also celebrated his 67th wedding anniversary the same day.
The French Government awarded the Legion d’Honneur medal, the highest award given by the French Republic, to those who were either at the Normandy invasion on D-Day or were there within the month afterwards.
The medal was presented to Jack by the French Consul in Nottingham, Jean Claude Lafontaine, in front of friends, family, dignitaries and members of the Council.
There But Not There Tommies
To commemorate the centenary of the end of WW1, NEDDC purchased 4 life sized Tommy silhouettes from “There But Not There”, a project led by Remembered charity, to display at the Council offices and leisure facilities in remembrance of all the men and women from North East Derbyshire who have fallen whilst serving their country.