Programme of events ready to show respect to our armed forces
A firework show will help mark the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War as tributes are paid to the armed forces,
Plans are being made to host a series of celebration events across South Tyneside - coming to a close with the display.
Members of South Tyneside Council’s cabinet will hear more about the commemorations at their meeting on Wednesday - part of an update on the local authority’s work in supporting the area’s armed forces community.
Coun Ed Malcolm, chairman of South Tyneside Armed Forces Forum, said: “We recognise the sacrifices of our service men and women and are committed to helping them with the pressures they can face in adapting back to civilian life, such as finding a job, arranging a new school for children or dealing with disability or mental health issues.
“Our commitment is demonstrated through the wealth of work we have done which includes ensuring the needs of ex-servicemen and women are embedded into council policy and services.
“One of our key pledges is giving them priority for housing.
“Receiving the prestigious Silver Employer Recognition Award by the Ministry of Defence in 2016 was a welcome acknowledge of how we go above and beyond when it comes to supporting our Armed Forces.”
The council’s commitment started with the signing of the Armed Forces Community Covenant in 2011, followed by the launch of the multi-agency Armed Forces Forum.
The Covenant is a voluntary statement of mutual support between the civilian and local armed forces communities.
Since then, the forum has held a series of commemoration events, including Remembrance and Anzac day services to marking the First World War centenary and gallant efforts of local hero, John Simpson Kirkpatrick.
The council has also implemented a policy to support reservist employees, appointed a dedicated outreach worker for ex-service personnel and a scheme to help military veterans back into work.
With support from the Heritage Lottery, work to commemorate the end of the First World War has already begun with the launch of the South Tyneside Remembers website as a lasting memorial to all those who served.
More information about support for the armed forces community can be found via www.southtyneside.gov.uk/armedforces.