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Blackpool and The Fylde College proud to sign Armed Forces Covenant

Published on 18/12/2023 by DBUCK

General news

Already having well-established links with the Armed Forces thanks to courses that actively promote entry into numerous roles within the military and a number of ex-service personnel as colleagues, Blackpool and The Fylde College was particularly proud to sign the Armed Forces Covenant this December.

The Armed Forces Covenant, a national initiative that has already attracted over 11,000 signatory organisations, is a promise to ensure those who serve or have served in the Armed Forces and their families are treated with fairness and respect by the communities, economy and society they serve. In practice, for an organisation like the College, this means understanding the training and education needs presented by military personnel and their families which could, for example, be the development of courses aimed at helping veterans transition from a military career into a civilian one.

The ceremony, which took place in front of an audience compromising local dignitaries, Armed Forces personnel, colleagues from B&FC and a cohort of students from Uniformed Protective Services, was conducted by Gary Oakford, Regional Employer Engagement Director for the MoD. Principal and CEO Alun Francis OBE signed on behalf of B&FC, alongside Sophie Addison, Director of Addison Group, a long-standing employer partner of B&FC who was also signing the Covenant.

Signing on Behalf of the Armed Forces was Colonel Darren Doherty, originally from Fleetwood and now Army Commander for the Northwest who said:

“I think just knowing that institutions like Blackpool and The Fylde College and businesses like Addison Group care enough and are interested enough in the Armed Forces to go through the process of signing the Covenant and all it represents is really important to people in the Army. That commitment itself is something that shouldn’t be underestimated.”

In response, Alun Francis was keen to point out the similarities between the two organisations both of whom place a huge importance of teamwork, enjoy a sense of camaraderie and look to create inclusive spaces where individuals have the opportunity to reach their fullest potential.

Watched on by the Worshipful the Mayor of Blackpool, Councillor Gillian Campbell, and Deputy Mayor, Councillor Major Adrian Hoyle, representatives from Addison Group, both of whom have served in the military, then addressed the audience, before the ceremony concluded with a drill conducted by students from Uniformed Protective Services.