Venue: 256 (City of London) Field Hospital, 19 Portsmouth Road, Kingston upon Thames, KT1 2QX
Contact: Sarah Goodman
Welcome from 256 (City of London) Field Hospital
Capt Kevin Haresign welcomed the SCMPB to 256 (City of London) Field Hospital and invited Warrant Officer David Barkworth to give an overview of the role of the Unit.
The Chairman thanked 256 Field Hospital for the presentation and for kindly hosting the meeting.
Welcome, Introductions and Apologies
Peter Martin welcomed everyone to the meeting and noted the apologies from:
· David Munro – Police and Crime Commissioner (Craig Jones representing)
· Steve Owen-Hughes – Surrey Fire and Rescue Service
· Trevor Pugh – SCC Director of Environment and Infrastructure
· Mr Richard Hampson – County Councillor
· Craig Spence – The Royal British Legion
· Pirbright Passing Out Parade
· Toolkit for Task Force Commanders
· Education issues
· Fundraising by Cadets
· Veterans Mental Health (attached)
ATC (Pirbright) – Armed Forces Champions and SCMPB members would be welcome to attend future Passing Out Parades at ATC (Pirbright) - spring/summer dates will be circulated. Action: Peter Bruinvels/Jenny Harvey
The Tool Kit for Task Force Commanders in the south east is in the process of being completed and will be promoted to the MoD as best practice. Action: Peter Bruinvels
Education – Admissions for service children is working well and most are getting in to their first choice schools. A few schools have large numbers of service children, but the majority have small numbers.
Performance figures (which have not yet been verified) suggest that service children are not performing as well as would be wished within schools and it was noted that these figures are borne out nationally. This is something that SCC is investigating. SCC is leading on a cross border application to the Covenant Fund to support service children, which should positively impact on their education attainment results.
It was noted by several members that it is a real challenge to get the parents of service children to engage with schools. It was further commented that often families have an unrealistic expectation about what the service pupil premium should be spent on eg school uniform or trips, and more education was required.
Action: Sarah Goodman/Peter Bruinvels/Mark Scarborough – Education to be added to the March agenda. To:
Cadets and Sword Company have supported major fundraising events in the county on behalf of ABF The Soldiers’ Charity Surrey.
Veterans’ Mental Heath
Virgin Care is no longer the Surrey provider for veterans mental health. The role has been taken over by London SE Service, which has a hub based in a Sussex Hospital. It has so far proved very hard to get an update from them – SSAFA has also had similar experience. Karen Simmonds will contact them again, but if there is no response she will go to NHS England. The Chairman will provide his support if required. Action: Karen Simmonds
Debbie Hustings (CCG) would be asked if there was a military element within the new Sustainability Transformation Plans that are being developed. Action: Sarah Goodman/Debbie Hustings
11 Brigade Update
To receive an update on 11 Brigade, priorities for Task Force Commanders and forthcoming unit moves
Col Simon Browne stated that support for the military in Surrey has never been stronger, and there has been a move from sympathy to empathy which was very much welcomed. In his first few weeks in post he has noted that the military need to give more back locally, and this is something he will raise with the Task Force Commanders.
There are a number of moves coming up over the next few years:
Recruiting is a key issue at the moment and there is a need to move away from the Army being the recruiter of last choice. They need support from partners to help attract aspirational young people to join the services in a variety of roles. Cadets are strong in Surrey and 8-20% of recruits are ex cadets. Employer engagement is key in helping to promote the messages and the benefits of employing Reservists.
Priorities for the coming year include youth engagement, Women 100 and WWI 100.
The Formation of 4PWRR
To receive an introduction to 4PWRR and its forthcoming formal arrival in Redhill in spring 2018 and plans for recruitment
Maj Matt Moore - EO gave a presentation on the formation of 4PWRR on behalf of Lt Col Ben Baker - CO. 4PWRR is a family and a local regiment. Board members were asked to spread the word about the new unit and share possible recruitment opportunities. Contact details for 4PWRR - 4PWRR-BHQ-XO@mod.uk
Following a request from Guildford Borough Council, 2pWRR with 4PWRR will take part in a Freedom Parade on Armed Forces Day 2018 subject to operational commitments.
The Chairman thanked Major Moore for his succinct and informative presentation.
An update on Forces Connect South East, following the successful application to the MoD Armed Forces Covenant Fund.
James Painter updated the group on the successful £321k to the MoD to promote a greater understanding and awareness of the issues affecting the Armed Forces Community within public authorities. Amanda Barnes is now in post (2yr contract) as Project Officer and is forging connections. A training programme is being put together for Surrey which includes face to face training as well as elearning especially for front line satff. Further information will follow when the programme is fully up and running in the New Year. Amanda will be invited to the next meeting to provide an update. Action: Jenny Harvey
SCMPB Exec Priorities (attached)
Recognise and Remember Task Group
· Headley Court Freedom Parade
· Armed Forces Champion Job Description
· Wray Park Designated War Memorial
· Audit of Surrey Armed Forces Covenant
· VC 100 - Leatherhead
Community Integration Task Group
· Update following workshop held on 2 October 2017
· Exec Priorities – A RAG status has been added to the priorities agreed at the last meeting, and progress made was noted.
· Recognise and Remember Task Group – Brig Paul Evans updated on the work of this group which is especially important going in to 2018.
o Headley Court Farewell Parade (29 Sept 2017) was a huge success with HRH Countess of Wessex as the Royal VIP backed up by the Band of the Household Cavalry. It was very well attended.
o Armed Forces Champions – Job Description has been updated and re-circulated
o Audit of Surrey’s Armed Forces Covenant – a draft will be complete by the end of October. Once agreed by the Chairman it will be given to Lt-Gen Nugee by Brig Evans and the Chairman as a good practice case study.
o Fire Service Memorial Service – A dedication event was due to take place 30 October 2017 at Surrey Fire and Rescue Service HQ in Reigate to commemorate 101 members of the fire service who lost their lives in WW1 and WW2 whilst on active service with the Military.
o VC100 Ceremony in honour of Lieutenant Harold Auten VC DSC RD who was in command of a Q ship – HMS Stock Force took place in Leatherhead on 7 October 2017. It was well attended with Vice Admiral Peter Dunt CB DL presiding on behalf of the Lord-Lieutenant. The Carpenter family were very moved.
o Surrey History Centre – the project to map war memorials across Surrey is going well. Cadets are now actively helping with this.
· Community Integration Workshop – 2 October 2017
The regular Task Group has been put on hold as it has made good progress and it was felt that it was time to review the outstanding needs. A workshop was held with Task Force Commanders representatives, Welfare Officers and officers from Housing, Education, Early Years and Health in October. Some of the issues raised included:
o Employment – there are fewer service leavers than a few years ago. Surrey is too expensive for most of those who do leave. 95% of service leavers find employment within six months.
o Spousal employment – is a tricky area. A skills fair is being organised at Pirbright by 11 Brigade focussing on softer skills based on research carried out by the Children’s Centre.
o Housing – this area has been successful and any new issues are being dealt with on a case by case basis. There is a need to encourage those thinking of leaving service to look ahead and plan financially. Housing may become more important in 10 years with new pension arrangements coming in to play. A lump sum will no longer be offered up front, which had previously often been used as a down payment. It was felt that Rushmoor’s Policy was not quite as good as Surrey’s. Action: Peter Bruinvels to share best practice.
o Some challenges were raised regarding spouses whose partner had served overseas for many ... view the full minutes text for item 7.
Surrey Armed Forces Covenant Conference - 1 February 2018
A discussion on proposed theme and items for the Surrey Armed Forces Covenant Conference which will be held on 1 February 2018 at RLC Deepcut – Strengthening Partnerships
The Board was updated regarding the conference being held on 1 February 2018 at Deepcut. The overall theme for the conference of ‘Strengthening Partnerships’ was supported. Suggestions for additional items included sharing achievements and the role of the Armed Forces Champion. Further suggestions should be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
· 11 Brigade Seminar – 18 October 2017
· Lord-Lieutenant’s Awards Ceremony – 19 October 2017
· Surrey Armed Forces Champions and Task Force Commanders – 16 November 2017
The update on the events was noted.
Col Patrick Crowley praised the depth of the conversations being held in Surrey when compared to other areas.
Recruitment of Reserves is doing well - the Navy are on course to meet their target, and although the Army may not meet its overall target, Surrey is doing well.
Ash Manor School with the backing of the Grenadier Guards is the first cadet force in a state school in Surrey and is doing well. It was suggested that a case study be developed in due course. Action: Sarah Goodman
· Covenant Fund Case Study (attached)
· Surrey Fire and Rescue Video
· Applications for grant funding are still being accepted. If anyone has an idea for a project they would like funded speak with Sarah Goodman. 01483 518095.
· The Task Force Commanders and Armed Forces Champions are meeting on 16 November for their annual seminar in the Officers’ Mess, Welsh Guard on Pirbright Camp.
· SSAFA has been working with the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner to launch a project around veterans in the Criminal Justice System. The three custody suites now ask if those in custody have served and if they would like support from SSAFA.
· The tabled update from Royal British Legion was noted (attached)
Date of next meeting
10am – 12pm Wednesday 21 March 2018 – venue TBC
10:00 – 12:00 Wednesday 21 March 2018-Venue TBC