Support for armed forces personnel - Support for the Armed Forces Community




Leaving the armed forces can have a huge impact on your life and your family. Not only must you find a new job and housing, but also settle your family into schools, jobs and social activities.

A wide range of services are available from Bassetlaw District Council and our partner organisations that can help with your resettlement.

Bassetlaw District Council has marked its support for the local services community by adopting an Armed Forces Community Covenant in 2013. Other partners and local groups also signed up to the principles in the Community Covenant, including Nottinghamshire Police, local NHS services, Nottinghamshire Fire & Rescue, Job Centre Plus, and BCVS on behalf of local voluntary and community services. More recently all the Nottinghamshire Councils have signed up to a joint updated Armed Forces Covenant.

The covenant is a voluntary statement of mutual support between a civilian community and its local armed forces representatives. It not only recognises the contribution of serving personnel, their families and veterans but importantly it identifies practical ways the Council can help them access support to help them adjust to life after leaving the services.

In turn, the armed forces promote ties with the local community and offer support wherever they can.


What is the Armed Forces Covenant

“A promise from the nation ensuring that those who serve or have served in the Armed Forces, and their families, are treated fairly”.

The covenant’s twin underlying principles are that members of the armed forces community should face no disadvantage compared to other citizens in the provision of public and commercial services; and that special consideration is appropriate in some cases, especially for those who have given the most, such as the injured or the bereaved.

armed forces covenant logo 

There are a range of national and local support services listed here. There are also local organisations that welcome ex forces personnel and their families to join them.



 Meet the Bassetlaw Covenant Team 

Image Details Statement
Tony Eaton

Councillor Tony Eaton BCA

Armed Forces Champion

21 Meadow Road, Worksop, Notts, S80 3QE


I have been a Worksop resident for the last 29 years and am proud to live in the ward I represent. Married with a daughter, I retired in 2018, having spent the last 11 years working for the charity Help for Heroes as a Regional Manager. In 2012 I was honoured and humbled to be able to carry the Olympic Torch as part of the Olympic Torch Relay. I have been involved in the ‘Green Stuff’ Military in one way or another for around 30 years and received a commission (class B) in the Territorial Army in 2002. I held the rank of Major with the Nottinghamshire Army Cadets Force before retiring and now volunteer as Police cadet leader training police cadets.
Stephen Brown

Stephen Brown

Head of Corporate Services

Telephone: 01909 533767

Mobile: 07711 772771

I am the senior Council officer responsible for armed forces issues. Part of my role is to ensure that we put the Covenant into action and that the fact you are a current member of the Armed Forces, a veteran or a family member is not a barrier to accessing Council services.
John Simmonds

John Simmonds

Markets Manager

Having served in the Royal Marines, I have a full understanding of service life and the impact of returning to “civvy street”. Given my experience, I act as a “buddy” for any member or ex-member of the services or their families who need to deal with the Council (or other bodies) but may not know where to start.
Elaine Simmonds

Elaine Simmonds

Revenues and Benefits Manager

Telephone: 01909 533 744

I make sure that both serving and ex forces personnel and their families are accessing all the support they can. As the wife of a former forces member, I have first hand experience of the impact on family members. In my team, there are dedicated welfare and money advisors who can support you and your family with issues around budgeting, housing, and debt as well as assisting with form filling. We can also signpost you to our partners for other support, including mental health, homelessness or dependency.


What does Bassetlaw District Council do for the forces and veterans? 

The Defence Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS) encourages employers  to support defence and inspire others to do the same. The scheme encompasses bronze, silver and gold awards for employer organisations that pledge, demonstrate or advocate support to defence and the armed forces community, and align their values with the Armed Forces Covenant.

The ERS is designed primarily to recognise private sector support although public sector organisations such as the emergency services, local authorities, NHS trusts and executive agencies are also eligible to join the ERS scheme.

Bassetlaw District Council is proud to be a Silver Award holder

Silver award holders must:

  • have signed the Armed Forces Covenant
  • have already stated their intent to be supportive by using the ERS website to register at the Bronze level
  • proactively demonstrate that service personnel/armed forces community are not unfairly disadvantaged as part of their recruiting and selection processes
  • employ at least one individual from the armed forces community category that the nomination emphasises, for example, an employer nominated for support to the Reserves must employ at least one Reservist
  • actively ensure that their workforce is aware of their positive policies towards defence people and their issues. For example, an employer nominated for support to the Reserves must have an internally publicised and positive HR policy on Reserves
  • must within the context of Reserves, have demonstrated support to mobilisations or have a framework in place. They must also demonstrate support to training, by providing at least 5 days’ additional unpaid/paid leave (wherever possible not to Reservist employees’ financial disadvantage)
  • not have been the subject of any negative PR or media activity
  • time off for reservist Veterans and reservists of the armed forces

Employment - Our pledge

As an employer we advertise jobs through the Career Transition Partnership. Jobs are placed on the Council’s website.

Our pledge of support for reservist employees:

  • Up to 2 weeks paid leave each year to attend military training camp (pro rata for part time staff)
  • a flexible working policy to assist with military commitments
  • management support in preparation for, during and after mobilisation
  • access to an Occupational Health service
  • access to an employee support line, a confidential counselling service
  • eligibility for sickness absence pay in line with terms and conditions
  • eligibility for maternity, paternity and adoption leave in line with terms and conditions
  • the District Council will encourage the reservist to keep in contact at a social level with friends and colleagues from their workplace during periods of mobilisation.

Employing a Reservist

Bassetlaw District Council is an identified priority area and the Council will be providing community leadership in supporting the Armed Forces with their recruitment campaign. We would encourage businesses to pledge their support for employing reservists. 


The removal of the need for a local connection when applying for Council Housing. 

Support - if you want to find out:

  • How to apply for housing from the Council
  • What to do if you are homeless
  • How to apply for grants to improve your home
  • Details of local housing associations
  • How to apply for help with rent or Council Tax support
  • Information about affordable housing schemes in your area

Financial advice and assistance

  • Darrell, one of our money advisors is specially trained to support the armed forces community and their families.
  • War Widows Pension, Armed Forces Independence Payment and War Disability Pension does not count as income when applying for Housing Benefit or Council Tax Support.
  • The money advisors of the Council can also help with accessing other support services for you, such as housing advice, help with debts, drug or alcohol dependency and homelessness.
  • You can email customer services or call them direct on 01909 533 744.

Bassetlaw Heroes Welcome

Bassetlaw District Council is supporting ‘HeroesWelcome’, an initiative that is encouraging a public show of support for current and former Armed Forces personnel and their families.

Whilst Heroes Welcome is not a charity or a discount scheme, it does provide a free and simple method for businesses, be it a service provider, café, pub, shop, restaurant, hotel, or taxi, to show a little special appreciation to those serving in the Armed Forces and to do it in a way that is effective and appropriate.

How Businesses and Services can sign up to the scheme - Joining Up is Free - and as Easy as 1-2-3

  1. Contact the Covenant Team to get your sticker
  2. Display it in your window with pride
  3. Decide whether or not you wish to offer a small discount 

By way of proof, all Service Personnel carry a clearly marked Military ID Card, which are being issued nationally.

Companies that have already signed up to the scheme are:

  • North Notts Community Arena
  • Springhead Brewery in Laneham, Retford
  • Little Lunch Company, Bridge Street, Worksop
  • Olive Grove, Bridge Street Worksop
  • Lynx Black Belt Leadership Academy
  • The Crossing, Worksop
  • Cypriana Café, Bridge Street, Worksop
  • The Cobblers, Retford
  • The Bike Shop, Retford
  • Batting 4 6, Retford
  • Bacon Butchers, Bridgegate, Retford
  • Alfresco, Potter Street, Worksop
  • MBE Chauffeurs, North Nottinghamshire
  • Royal Coffee House - Priory Shopping Centre, Worksop
  • Stapletons Locksmiths, Worksop
  • The Lock Keeper, Worksop
  • Fighting Fit Kitchen, Worksop
  • FRV Tailoring, Shirebrook
  • Yates, Worksop
  • Aurora Wellbeing Centre, Worksop
  • The Coffee Terrace, Worksop Library


The District Council plays the lead role in commemorating those from our community who have served in past conflicts and those who have made the ultimate sacrifice. 

Remembrance Sunday

  • Sgt Johnson VC – Memorial Ceremony
  • Wing Commander Nowak Plaque – Worksop
  • Flt. Atterby McCains memorial – Retford
  • Lieutenant Pickard VC –memorial – Worksop


Local Support

Royal British Legion - The Council has a long association with the Royal British Legion and awarded the two branches with the ‘Freedom of the District’ in 2019.

Worksop Branch

Branch meets at 19:30hrs the last Thursday of every month at:

Kilton Forest Golf Club ,Blyth Road, Worksop, S81 0TL

Contact: Mr Ray Fielding

Telephone: 0808 802 8080 Opening Times: 8am - 8pm

Retford and District Branch

The Branch meets at 19.30hrs on the first Monday of every month at the Babworth Sports & Social Club in Retford DN22 7NJ. Please note: there are no meetings in January and August.

Telephone: 0808 802 8080

Opening Times: 8am - 8pm

Alternatively, contact: Welfare Chairman: Mrs Cath Richardson


Come and join us for a coffee on the first Friday of the month at the Town Hall, Bircotes 10am - 12noon. Veterans and everyone welcome.

Royal Air Forces Association

Retford Babworth Road Sports & Social Club Babworth, Retford DN22 7NJ 

Worksop Armed Forces Veterans Breakfast Club

Meets every Saturday from 10am - 12noon at:

Yates, Victoria Square, Worksop, S80 1DX.

All Veterans, Serving Members and their Families are welcome.

You can find us on Facebook at: Armed Forces & Veterans Breakfast

Clubs Club POC - Contact: Ian Hollis and Michelle Smith

Retford Breakfast Club

The Galway Arms 64 Bridgegate, Retford DN22 7UZ

Telephone: Steve on 07902 376 709

Every Saturday 9.00hrs

Retford Breakfast Club

A group of veterans from Her Majesty’s Armed Forces Meets regularly on Two Sundays per month

The King and Miller, North Road, Retford DN22 7XW

Contact: Denis Scaife

Worksop Military Community & Veterans Centre (MCVC) 

We are a group of local veterans offering peer support to the local military & veteran community via our Friday morning drop-in 10am to 12 noon at the Golden Ball, Victoria Square (opposite Matalan), Worksop.

Contact: Philip Langlands; 07951 173 395

Forces Friends

Forces Friends is a short term support and befriending service providing support to older, lonely, isolated military veterans and their dependants.; 0115 844 0011

Age UK 


Other Groups

OP Banger - The Crossing, Worksop


Useful Websites & Sources of Information for Veterans General Support 

You can also find links to all of these through Veterans Gateway.

The Legion is here to help members of the Royal Navy, British Army, Royal Air Force, veterans and their families, and we’re not going anywhere.

We support serving and ex-serving personnel all year round, every day of the week.

Our support starts after seven days of service and continues through life, long after service is over.

Royal British Legion (RBL) provides practical care, advice and support to serving members of the Armed Forces, veterans of all ages and their families. The RBL run the Poppy Calls Handy Person Service which provides a service for small household repairs and minor adaptations around the home.

Looking for a job or training? Need advice about resettlement? Trying to work your way through the pensions minefield? You’ll find a whole range of useful guides and contacts are available via the Royal British Legion’s Website

If you need help, call our Contact Centre helpline on 0808 802 8080 from 8am to 8pm, 7 days a week (calls are free from UK landlines and main mobile networks).

Helping Veterans, service personnel and their families.Today, seven people will be medically discharged from the Armed Forces and their lives will change forever. In an instant, these highly-trained individuals will lose the camaraderie, purpose and career which has been their life.

We provide recovery and support for the Armed Forces community whose lives are affected by their service, no matter when they served.

Our aim is to empower Veterans and Service Personnel to look beyond illness and injury. Every penny we raise, facility we run and activity we offer is to help Veterans and Service Personnel reach their potential, regain their purpose and have a positive impact on society.

Write to us

Help for Heroes, Unit 14 Parkers Close, Downton Business Centre, Salisbury, Wiltshire SP5 3RB or complete an on-line form on the  Help for Heroes Website.

Phone us

  • To Give Support call us on 0300 303 9888 - Monday to Friday, 9am - 5pm (calls to this number are charged at your standard network rate)
  • To Get Support call your nearest Recovery Centre
  • North: Phoenix House, Catterick 01748 834 148
  • Notts and East: Chavasse VC House, Colchester 01206 814 880

Email us

Royal Air Forces Association

The Royal Air Forces Association is committed to providing confidential, professional and fair services to members of the wider RAF family from the youngest recruit to the oldest veteran and their families.

Ongoing training and support for welfare volunteers and staff ensures services are consistent and of the highest possible standard. All will be treated with dignity and respect at all times.

Contact: 0800 018 2361

Royal Air Forces Association

MOD Army 

The MOD Army provides details on a range of welfare issues including deployment support for families, legal assistance and a dedicated Forcesline for confidential guidance.

Personal Support Staff provide accessible, independent, confidential and professional, specialist welfare services to serving soldiers and their families with any personal or family difficulty, thereby strengthening and enhancing the resilience and resourcefulness of serving soldiers and their families.

The Intake & Assessment Team provide: Domestic Abuse, Child & Adult Safeguarding, Bereavement, Relationship Difficulties, Stress & Anxiety Management, Emotional Wellbeing, Signposting. For all Army Personnel Support helpline: 01904 882 053

Naval Families Federation

The Naval Families Federation lists organisations and charities that can help with a range of welfare issues, including bereavement and disability needs. They help with expert advice and information on issues such as accommodation, education and relationships.

Contact: 02392 654 374 Building 25, HMS Excellent, Portsmouth, Hampshire, PO2 8ER Opening hours: Monday to Thursday: 9am – 5pm Friday: 9am – 1pm 

Navel Families Website

The Army Families Federation (AFF)

The Army Families Federation (AFF) is independent of the Army and offers confidential advice on a range of welfare issues including money matters and family life. AFF works at a local level directly with serving families and local command and within a year of transaction.

Regional Manager North & Central Team : Jessica Harriman 07824 534 357 or 07824 456 280; 

Army Families Website


Soldier, Sailors, Airmen and Families Association

SSAFA provide financial, practical and emotional assistance to anyone that is currently serving or has ever served in the Army, Navy or RAF and their families. The local branch can be contacted on:

• Nottingham Telephone: 0115 978 1623

• South Yorkshire Telephone: 07941 361 210

SSAFA Website

Forces in the Community

Forces in the Community is a local charity, based in Beeston, Nottingham is committed to supporting ex-service personnel through employment guidance, housing advice, mental health support and provides a supportive environment in which to develop. The charity supports the clients and their families, who are often disadvantaged and at a point of crisis in their lives.

Their primary focus is helping clients to gain employment. We identify transferable skills, ‘civilianised’ military language, provide CV writing advice and interview guidance, liaise with employers and provide job search support. Telephone: 0115 922 0320 

Forces in the Community Website


Finances & Benefits

Bassetlaw District Council - Benefits and Money Advice Team You can get help with payment of rent and Council Tax from the council. If you are unemployed or on a low income, you may be able to claim Universal Credit. Council Tax Support can be claimed online at or call 01909 533 710. We disregard war disability pensions, war widows pension and Armed Forces Independence payment when working how much help you can get. If you need any advice on how to claim, help with claiming on-line, budgeting support or debt support, please contact our money advice team on 01909 533 744.

Veterans UK

There are a number of pension support and compensation schemes administered by Veterans UK on behalf of the Ministry of Defence available to serving and former serving personnel who are injured as a result of their service in the armed forces. The scheme that applies to each individual will depend on when and where you served and when you were injured.

Further details about the support Veterans-UK can provide:


Free helpline telephone: UK only 0808 1914 218

Veterans Advisory and Pensions Committees (VAPC)

Advise veterans and their families on their needs, issues and concerns. VAPC is an advisory body sponsored by the Ministry of Defence. Formerly known as the War Pensions Committees, VAPC advise and liaise with veterans, their families and relevant organisations on their needs, issues and concerns. They assist, raise awareness, advocate and provide governance to the veterans’ community, and champion the rights of veterans and their families where there is injustice, inequality or a lack of fairness.

The Royal British Legion (RBL) provides financial, social and emotional care and support to all members of the British Armed Forces - past and present and their families.

For more information go to the RBL website.

The RBL also runs MoneyForce, the home of money guidance for UK service people. A joint initiative between Standard Life Charitable Trust, The Royal British Legion and the Ministry of Defence, the MoneyForce website aims to assist all service personnel, their partners, families and dependants, to be better equipped to manage their money and financial affairs.

Service Personnel and Veterans Agency (SPVA) provides pay, pension and support services to both military personnel and the veterans’ community.

The War Pensions Scheme (WPS) Your claim can be considered under the WPS if you are no longer serving and your disablement was caused as a result of service in the armed forces before 6 April 2005.

The Armed Forces Compensation Scheme (AFCS) You can claim under the AFCS where the illness or injury was caused as a result of service on or after 6 April 2005. You do not need to have left the armed forces before claiming.

The Criminal Injuries Compensation (Overseas) Scheme (CICO) You can claim under the CICO if you or your eligible dependants are the innocent victim of a crime of violence while serving overseas.

Veterans UK helpline - Veterans UK, Ministry of Defence, Norcross, Thornton Cleveleys FY5 3WP

Freephone (UK only): 0808 1914 218

Telephone (overseas): +44 1253 866 043

Normal Service 8.00 am to 5.00 pm Monday to Friday

When the helpline is closed, callers in need of immediate emotional support will be given the option to be routed to The Samaritans 24hr helpline.


Discounts & Rewards

Rewards for Forces is the UK’s largest discount website featuring thousands of national and local discounts. The discounts are available for serving personnel and their partners of the Navy, Army, Air Force and veterans, service widows/widowers, reservists, cadets, MOD civil servants and the Royal British Legion.

Telephone: 01604 647 770

Rewards for Forces website

Defence Discount Service provides discounts both online and on the high street for members of the Armed Forces, Veterans and Armed Forces Community.

Defence Discount Service is home of the Defence Privilege Card, the vetted discount card that can be used in stores, restaurants and venues to obtain armed forces discounts. This discount card allows Veterans and the Armed Forces Community to have a card that can allow them to receive military discounts.

Telephone: 01509 233 446

Defence Discount Service website


Jobs and Employment

Career Transition Partnership (CTP) Is a partnering agreement between the Ministry of Defence and Right Management Ltd, who are global career development and outplacement specialists and part of the Manpower Group. The CTP provides resettlement services for those leaving the Royal Navy, Army, Royal Air Force and Marines. Regardless of time served, all members of the Armed Forces can benefit from CTP support when leaving Service. This service brings together a number of different services into one, which aims to provide seamless support to service leavers. The services which CTP offer include:

  • core resettlement programme
  • employment support programme
  • early service leaver programme
  • spouse employment support trial
  • reservists employment support

For more information visit the Career Transition Partnership website.

Remploy helps disabled veterans to prepare for and find employment after the Armed Forces.

Their support includes:

  • skills development
  • confidence building
  • work preparation, including CV writing and application support
  • access to the latest local vacancies
  • ongoing support when you start work, including advice on any reasonable adjustments you may need
  • advice and guidance on career progression.

Remploy also helps veterans experiencing depression, anxiety, stress or other mental health issues in the workplace. Their Workplace Mental Health Support Service enables individuals to overcome the issues they are experiencing at work, so that they can remain in their job.

For more information go to their Remploy website.

Regular Forces Employment Agency - Provide lifelong, life-changing support, jobs and training opportunities to service leavers, veterans and reservists. Tel. 0121 262 3058 or email



Housing and Homeless

Bassetlaw Housing Needs Team If you have been served an eviction notice or are moving from service accommodation, into the Bassetlaw area, please contact us for help, with finding accommodation.

As a serving member or ex-member of the armed forces, you will not need to have had local links to apply for council accommodation.


Telephone: 01909 533 533 (ask for Housing Needs)

Mon to Fri 9am - 5pm

Out of hours emergency 01909 534 999

Joint Service Housing Advice Office

The JSHAO is the MOD’s tri-service focal point to provide service personnel and their dependants with civilian housing information for those wishing to move to civilian accommodation at any time in their career, and for those during resettlement to assist with the transition to civilian life.

Floor 2, Zone 2, Montgomery House, Queen’s Avenue, ALDERSHOT, Hants, GU11 2JN

Telephone: 01252 787 574


JSHAO telephone advice line: 01252 787 574

JSHAO website

Red Rose Housing

Red Rose Housing is a Nottingham based charity that is dedicated to helping vulnerable veterans. They are a specialist housing provider determined to helping the homeless and also promoting opportunities for vulnerable and excluded people to help change the direction of their lives.

They also provide support and legal guidance for those in need of assistance, including:

  • Training in illegal money lending
  • Financial Abuse from scam emails and letters directed at vulnerable people
  • Adult safeguarding and safe guarding children
  • Domestic Violence
  • Tenancy Issues
  • Housing Disrepair

Red Rose Housing can be contacted by phone on 0115 964 8334

Shelter the housing and homelessness charity provide specialist advice to Armed Forces and Ex-Services personnel

Shelter website


Health & Wellbeing

Midlands and East Veterans Transition, Liaison and Intervention Service (TILS)

NHS TIL Service is a new service for armed forces personnel approaching discharge as well as for veterans. The service will help to recognise some of the early signs associated with mental health difficulties and will provide access to a number of interventions, therapeutic treatments for complex problems and psychological trauma and prevent patient reaching crisis point. It will also help tackle some of the most common mental health and substance misuse problems such as alcoholism, anxiety and depression and join up services across the board, working with local authorities and charities so that the whole of a person’s needs and their families are looked after. 

For veterans: If you are experiencing mental health difficulties, these services can provide a range of treatment and support regardless of when you left the armed forces. This includes recognising the early signs of mental health problems and providing access to early treatment and support, as well as therapeutic treatment for complex mental health difficulties and psychological trauma. Patients are also provided with help, where appropriate, with employment, reduction in alcohol consumption, housing and social support.


  • be a resident in England
  • have an identified or diagnosed mental health illness/order AND have discharge date from MOD or be found to be unfit for continued military service by their medical board OR
  • have been identified by the Departments of Community Mental Health as requiring follow on psychiatric care on discharge from MOD OR
  • have had their pre-release medical and been identified by the DMS GP as requiring mental health transition support OR
  • have had a pre-existing medical before they self refer

Where the service is based

Advice and care are provided in an improved range of locations and settings and via a range of methods including face to face and Skype

Hours of Operation - Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm

How to contact the service:

Telephone - 0300 323 0137

Email -

How to access service:

You can self refer or request a referral from one of the following:

  • GP or healthcare professional
  • Royal British Legion
  • Combat Stress
  • Help for Heroes

Combat Stress is a veterans’ mental health charity that support veterans in two main areas. One, by running a community outreach service, which provides help to veterans with benefit entitlements, money problems and other day-to-day problems The second way involves more intensive treatment for service-related mental health problems and they provide clinical treatment at their three short-stay residential treatment centres (Shropshire, Surrey and Ayrshire). They also run a Well-being and Rehabilitation Programme, which is available to all veterans receiving treatment at their short stay treatment centres, this is part of structured occupational therapy model.

24 hour helpline: 0800 138 1619


For more information visit the Combat Stress website.

The Joining Forces Veterans Mental Health App – This app is designed for Veterans of the British Armed Forces, providing information on mental health problems and highlighting where to get help. The app can be downloaded from itunes or google playstore.

Veterans Welfare Service

The Veterans Welfare Service (VWS) is committed to enhancing the quality of life for veterans and beneficiaries of Veterans UK pensions and compensation schemes, and all their dependants. VWS caseworkers offer one to one professional help and guidance by telephone, or if needed, during a home visit.

Under Veterans UK, the VWS works in partnerships with the Royal Navy, British Army and Royal Air Force, ex-service charities, statutory and non-statutory bodies, local community service providers and the Veterans Advisory and Pensions Committees to provide a quality welfare service that promotes independence, maintains dignity and provides continuous support through life. The VWS has 4 Veterans Welfare Centres, providing advice and support across the UK.


Kidderminster (South and Central Wales, Midlands and East England)

Telephone: 01562 825527


Norcross VWC

(NW England, Yorkshire and Humber, North Wales and IOM)

Telephone: 01253 333 494 



Last Updated on Monday, January 4, 2021