Basingstoke Armed Forces Community Covenant

The Armed Forces Covenant is a promise from the nation to those who serve or have served in the Armed Forces, and their families that they will be treated fairly when accessing services and not face discrimination compared to other citizens. In some cases, special consideration is appropriate for those who have given most, such as the injured and the bereaved.

The Armed Forces Covenant Duty

Since November 2022 the government approved New Armed Forces Covenant Duty. The legislation imposed a new Duty on relevant public bodies, when exercising certain aspects of their public functions in the areas of housing, healthcare, and education to have due regard to the three principles of the Armed Forces Covenant:

  • recognising the unique obligations of, and sacrifices made by, the Armed Forces
  • the principle that it is desirable to remove disadvantages arising for service people from membership, or former membership, of the Armed Forces
  • the principle that specials provision for Service people may be justified by the effects on such people of membership, or former membership, of the armed forces

The Armed Forces Community

You are a member of the Armed Forces community if you are:

  • serving or regular personnel
  • a reservist (volunteer and regular)
  • a veteran (those who have served at least one day in HM Armed Forces)
  • family of serving personnel, reservists and veterans (including spouses, civil partners, children whom they are responsible for and, where appropriate, parents and unmarried partners)
  • immediate family of serving personnel and veterans who have died, whether or not that death has any connection with service

Our commitment

The Armed Forces Covenant was signed by Basingstoke and Deane on the 24 June 2013 in conjunction with RAF Odiham, South East Reserve Forces’ and Cadets’ Association, Service Personnel and Veterans Agency and Basingstoke Voluntary Services.

We will support the services community:

  • ensuring that they can access services that they are entitled to
  • ensuring that when services are being reviewed or designed that the issues armed forces personnel and their families face are considered
  • encouraging local businesses, community groups and individuals to work with us to pledge their support to armed forces personnel and their families as well as reservists and veterans

We have developed an action plan, which highlights the areas where due regard is already being shown and identifies the areas where further work is required.

PDF document Action Plan(PDF) [89 kb]

If you need to contact the armed forces officer please email policy@basingstoke.gov.uk

Housing support

There are several housing options to consider if looking for accommodation. Information on those options as well as what to do if you're homeless or threatened with homelessness are given below.

Social rented housing

To ensure that current and former service personnel are not disadvantaged when applying for social housing, the council’s allocations policy provides exemptions to the 2-year residency/employment criteria. The exemption criteria apply to applicant:

  • currently serving in the armed forces
  • who are a former member of, the armed forces, and is not currently residing in the district (but had previously resided in the borough for 2 years, immediately prior to being posted in the armed forces)
  • who are a former member of the armed forces who are applying for social housing within 5 years of discharge
  • who are a bereaved spouse or civil partner of a member of the armed forces or a seriously injured reservist who is either currently employed or resident in the borough

All applicants must meet the other eligibility criteria and have a reasonable preference (housing need) as defined in the allocations policy.

View the council's allocation policy and find out how to apply for the councils housing register. Contact the team at housing@basingstoke.gov.uk if you require assistance with the application.

Private Rented Accommodation

Normally the fastest route into accommodation, this option gives you more choice and flexibility in where you would like to live. Find out more about securing accommodation in the private sector.

Information to the rights and responsibilities of tenants and landlords can be found on the government website.

Low-Cost Home Ownership

Low-cost home ownership opportunities are open to people who cannot afford to purchase a home on the open market but want to buy their own home. There are a variety of options available. Find information on the options available, events and how to join our Low-Cost Home Ownership register

Discounts on Council Tax are available to eligible members of the Armed Forces.

Health and Wellbeing

Members of the Armed Forces and Veterans are eligible for concessionary rates at the Basingstoke Aquadrome. For more information contact their membership team.

Mental health support

Togetherall

Free Mental Health support for all UK Military Veterans and their family members. Togetherall is a safe, online community where people support each other anonymously to improve mental health and wellbeing.

Op COURAGE

Provides specialist care and support for service leavers, reservists, veterans and their families.

The team offers mental health assessment by a specialist veterans mental health practitioner who is from or has experience of working with the Armed Forces community.

You can contact the service yourself, be referred by a family member, a third sector organisation or a GP.

Make a referral or self-refer, by calling 0300 365 2000 (option 4) or emailing gateway@berkshire.nhs.uk

View the OpCOURAGE SouthEast website

Find out more about the NHS mental health support for veterans, service leavers and reservists

Veterans Outreach Support

Provides a welcoming and relaxed setting where UK veterans and family members can drop in for confidential social or psychological support. Members of the British Armed Forces and Reserves, the Royal Fleet Auxiliary and the Merchant Navy are welcome.

Contact Veterans Outreach Support by calling 02392731767 or emailing admin@vosuk.org

Find out more from the Veterans Outreach Support website

Boots on the Ground

Founded by veterans, with the simple mission statement of supporting soldiers, veterans and family members whenever help is required. The charity was founded in memory of a former soldier Wayne Passmore who took his life after his return home from Bosnia.

The charity runs small activity weekends for veterans and their families, offer life support, back to work programs, sign posting and other support services.

Contact Boots on the Ground by calling 08000 699990 or by completing the Contact us form on their webpage

Individual Planning and Personal Development (IPPD)

An Army runs programme that aims to ensure that service leavers are given all the relevant information needed to make an informed choice allowing a smooth transition into civilian life.

Find mental health, wellbeing and resilience advice for service leavers on the Army website

Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM)

Leading a movement against suicide, CALM runs a free and confidential helpline and webchat, 7 hours a day, 7 days a week for anyone who needs to talk.

Find out more on the CALM website or call their helpline on 0800 58 58 58.

Bereavement

Veterans Bereavement Support

A community-based organisation providing free advice and information for all those who have served or have served in the Armed Forces and Merchant Navy. ​

​Providing ongoing bereavement care for families and friends of those who have served and who struggle with the passing of someone special, including advice and information on funeral etiquette including the loan of regimental or general service drapes for the coffin.

Contact the Veterans Bereavement Service by:

Find more information on the Veterans bereavement support website

Support for those with physical injuries

NHS Veterans Trauma Network

Provides care and treatment to those who have been injured during their time in the Armed Forces. The service is available in selected NHS health centres across England.

The referral process is simple. Tell your NHS GP you served in the Armed Forces and they can refer you by emailing england.veteranstraumanetwork@nhs.net.

Help for Heroes

Provides a range of support and services for wounded, injured and sick service personnel (regular and reserves) and veterans who have suffered illness or injuries in serving the nation.

Find more information on the Help for Heroes website or call 07808 789492.

Blesma

An Armed Forces charity dedicated to assisting serving personnel and veterans who have suffered life-changing limb loss or use of a limb, an eye or sight. It provides financial and emotional support to individuals and their families.

Find out more on the Blesma website or call 020 8590 1124.

Veterans Hearing Foundation

If you have served in the UK Armed Forces and now have hearing loss, tinnitus or both, you may be able to apply for support from the Veterans Hearing Foundation. Find more information on the Veterans Hearing Foundation website or call 01455 248900.

Basingstoke Tinnitus Support group

Offering information and support about tinnitus. Find out more on the Basingstoke tinnitus group website or email baatingroup@outlook.com

Blind Veterans

Providing rehabilitation, training, practical advice and emotional support to veterans regardless of how or when they lost their sight. Helping blind veterans regain their independence and live the life they choose. Find out more on the Blind Veterans website

Support if you are disabled

Blue Badge parking permit

The parking permit allows people with severe mobility problems (caused by visible and non-visible disabilities) to park close to their destination making it easier to access goods and services. The badge holder can use the permit whenever they travel as a driver or passenger.

Find more information about Blue Badges and to apply for a Blue Badge

Disabled facility grant scheme

If you are a disabled person with physical barriers that make it difficult for you to carry out ordinary day-to-day activities in your home. Or someone you live with has a disability, you may be eligible for a grant to pay for adaptations to your home.

This grant is available to owner-occupiers, private and housing association tenants (with the landlord's permission) and council tenants who have had the work refused by housing services.

Find out more about the disabled facilities grant, including how to apply

Personal care for veterans

NHS England and NHS Improvement, together with the Ministry of Defence have set out a new personalised care approach for those veterans who have a long-term physical, mental or neurological health condition or disability.

Organisations are encouraged to work together with the veteran to plan and deliver coordinated and personalised care. As part of this, veterans may be eligible for a personal budget to pay for some of the care and support they need.

Find more information on the NHS website or speak to your GP.

Skills and employment

  • Armed forces access to Jobcentre Plus has armed services champions in place to help provide support for current and former armed forces personnel and their families.
  • The Career Transition Partnership encourages recruiters to hire former members of the armed forces. You are eligible for support for up to two years before leaving the armed forces, and up to two years after.
  • Forces Employment Charity the leading military employment charity. It helps thousands of veterans each year.
  • Lifeworks Families a free support service to help veterans and family members of serving armed forces personnel find a job.
  • Forces Families Jobs offers training and employment for family members of current armed forces personnel. It also helps people who have left the armed forces within the last 12 months. It supports bereaved spouses and partners for up to two years post service.

Events 2024

Further links to charities and support

Sign up for email updates

Receive information on council services, news and events by email.

© 2024 Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council