Gold award for Woking Borough Council’s forces-friendly policies


Thursday, 13 August, 2020

Woking has become the first borough council in Surrey to receive an Employer Recognition Scheme ‘Gold Award’ from the Ministry of Defence.

The scheme acknowledges employers who have provided exceptional support to the armed forces community by going above and beyond their covenant pledges.

Woking Borough Council signed the Armed Forces Covenant in 2012 and four years later, received the Employer Recognition Scheme ‘Silver Award’- an essential prerequisite for Gold Award nominees.

Woking Borough Council now joins the likes of Citibank, Lloyd’s of London, Rolls-Royce PLC, Royal Mail and Surrey County Council in providing the highest levels of support for the country’s service men and women, and their families.

Gold nominations are considered by a national selection board. Worthy award winners must provide ten extra paid days leave for reservists and have in place HR policies that support veterans and spouses/partners of serving personnel. They also advocate the benefits of supporting those within the armed forces community encouraging others to sign the Armed Forces Covenant and engage in the Employer Recognition Scheme.

Cllr David Bittleston, Leader of Woking Borough Council, said: “Our armed forces make enormous sacrifices to protect our freedom and the greatest way we can show our appreciation is to ensure that they and their families do not face disadvantage when integrating back into civilian life.

“As an employer we recognise the challenges faced by the armed forces community and how important flexibility is to those still actively engaged in serving their country. We hope this Gold Award encourages members of the armed forces community to consider a career with the council when seeking future employment.”

John Kingsbury, the borough’s Army Champion said: “I am delighted that Woking is the first borough in Surrey to be honoured with the Employer Recognition Scheme's prestigious Gold Award. This award by the Ministry of Defence recognises the achievements of Woking’s Military Covenant Advisory Panel, council officers, and military personnel in supporting the armed forces, veterans and reservists, as well as the close relationship Woking has developed with the 11th Infantry Brigade and the Army Training Centre in Pirbright.”

For more information please visit our Armed Forces Support webpages.