Friday, 28 April 2017

Stay MoneyFit During Your Career

You’ll see lots of things in your Armed Forces career – after all, that’s what you signed up for.

Make sure your money stays as MoneyFit as you by taking control of it in every aspect of your career.

Make the most or your career opportunities

Find out all you need to know about your pay and living arrangements Before you join the Services.

Then see what you can expect from early career through to deployment and all the other issues you may come across during Service.

For further information and a fun 'career quiz'   CLICK HERE

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Defence Discount Service - Deal of the Week

Cotswold Outdoor Offer - Receive a 15% discount online.

Cotswold Outdoor are offering Defence Discount Service members a 15% discount online. 

Visit the Defence Discount Service Website to get the code and then shop on the Cotswold Outdoor website.

Remember there is also an app for the Defence Discount Service.

Sepsis - The Symptoms

For further information, visit or

Terrorism Guidance

For further information
and to view a short video

Just for Her Issue 12 - Now Online

To read, print or download this issue

Monday, 24 April 2017

Service Leavers and Home Owners - Understanding Council Tax

While you are living in Service Families Accommodation you are exempt from paying Council Tax but instead you pay CILOCT (Contribution In Lieu Of Council Tax) which is shown on your pay statement.

When you move out of SFA and into your own home or rented property you will need to register with the local council to pay the correct rate of council tax for that property.

When you enter your postcode online you can find out what Council tax band your house is in and how much your local council charges for that band.

The valuation bands for your home in England and Scotland are based on the price a property would have achieved if it had been sold on the open market on 1 April 1991. In Wales assessments are based on the value of property on 1 April 2003.

A Council Tax bill tells you:

How much you have to pay for the year

How that amount has been worked out

The dates you have to pay

Find out more on

Passport Photo Requirements

What are the photo SIZE and signing rules for YOUR passport application?

for a useful article and video which give excellent guidance

Friday, 21 April 2017

Stricter Speeding Fines in Force

Speeding fines are set to rise this month with significantly harsher penalties for the worst offenders.

Motorists who are caught speeding will come up against a new set of regulations from 24th April 2017.  

For those a couple of miles an hour over the limit, nothing will change - but the big difference is a significant increase in fines for the worst offenders. 

A TV Licence is Not Standard issue

For further information

Lifeworks Families has been Extended – Now Offering Even More Remote Support

The LifeWorks Team at RBLI is very excited about the new and improved Remote Employment Support Service we can now offer to ALL UK ARMED FORCES DEPENDENTS. 

For the first time, LifeWorks is extending the already successful support service to service dependents of school leaving age as well as university leavers. This is IN ADDITION to the service already offered to military spouses and their partners.

The Standard Learning Credits Scheme

The Standard Learning Credits Scheme allows personnel to obtain financial assistance for learning costs.

Military personnel are able to claim 80% of course fees, up to a maximum of £175 per financial year.

To qualify for SLC funding, the course of study must lead to a nationally recognised qualification, have substantial developmental value and directly benefit the Service.

Click HERE for further details

Are your Dependent Children Registered on JPA?

Declaring dependent Service children on JPA can enable appropriate allowances to be obtained, enable paternity and adoption leave requests and can have an influence on allocation of Service housing and potential assignments.

To complete the registration process, the military member of the family should provide a copy of the child’s birth certificate to their unit HR who will complete the JPA process.

For more information, contact

Thursday, 20 April 2017

UK Visa Fees as of 6 April 2017

For Immigration and Nationality fees for all applications made from outside and within the UK please CLICK HERE

Home-Start Medway's Financial Fitness Champions

Further information from
or ring 01634570717

Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Tax-Free Childcare

Tax-Free Childcare will be available to millions of working families across the UK, and over time it will replace childcare vouchers, which will close to new entrants from April 2018. Voucher schemes remain open to existing members.

Eligible parents with children under 12 (under 17 for disabled children) will be able to set up an online childcare account to pay their childcare providers directly. For every £8 parents pay in, the Government will add £2, up to a maximum contribution of £2,000 per child, per year (£4,000 per year for disabled children). To qualify, parents must be in work, this includes self-employment, and each expected to work a minimum of 16 hours per week and earn no more than £100,000 per year.

Service Family Accommodation - Compensation Scheme

To read, download or print the whole document, please CLICK HERE

Broadband Providers Drop Cancellation Fees for Armed Forces Personnel

Mark Lancaster, Minister for Defence Veterans, Reserves and Personnel has announced that armed forces personnel will no longer have to face cancellation fees for their broadband and media packages when posted overseas or to another part of the UK not covered by their current provider.

The commitment from the UK’s biggest broadband providers representing 95 per cent of Britain’s broadband market comes into force immediately, and will benefit tens of thousands of forces households in the UK and abroad.

The change agreed to under the tenets of the Armed Forces Covenant includes BT, EE, Plusnet, Talk Talk and Virgin Media, who have all committed to treating military personnel fairly when cancelling their contracts.

Armed Forces Bereavement Scholarship Scheme

To read or download a larger copy of the above flyer CLICK HERE
For further information, CLICK HERE

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

New FASD Awareness and Support Charity in the Medway Area

FASD is a series of preventable birth defects caused entirely by a woman drinking alcohol at any time during her pregnancy, often even before she knows that she is pregnant. Beer, wine, spirits - it's all the same to the developing baby.

FASD Awareness Kent & Medway run monthly support groups, offer FREE FASD Information Sessions for local schools & nurseries and will soon be providing Specialist Accredited Training Courses, delivering information about Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder and practical guidance for those dealing with FASD.​

The course is designed for health/mental health workers, social service providers, educators and any professionals in the UK working with children, adolescents and adults affected by FASD. Parents, caregivers and family members will also find this course useful.

Please visit our website to find out more about FASD Awareness Kent & Medway.


Friday, 7 April 2017

Chatham HIVE

Don't Forget.......Your HIVE can help you by finding answers to questions about many aspects of living within a military community and has useful information to help with relocating including how to apply for Service Families Accommodation, Schools, Finding Doctors and Dentists and much more.

In addition, your HIVE always has up to date information about your military community and the local area.

Your HIVE Information Centre is located at The Lampard Centre, Sallyport, Brompton, ME7 5BU and you are welcome to drop in.  The HIVE opening hours at Monday to Thursday 8am - 4.30pm and Friday 8am - 12.20pm.

Alternatively you can e-mail or telephone 01634 848163.

Thursday, 6 April 2017

New GCSE Grades in England

Students taking GCSEs in England this summer will receive a mixture of number and letter grades. English language, English literature and maths are the first subjects to use the new system, with most other subjects adopting numbers by 2019. Eventually all GCSEs taken in England will receive numerical grades.

Haven for Heroes - Victory Services Club, London

The Haven for Heroes scheme offers an exclusive 50% discount on our room rates for the British Armed Forces who are members of the VSC.

This offer is available to personnel returning on mid-operational tour R&R from named operations in overseas theatres or those who are within 6 months of returning at the end of an operational deployment on a named operation overseas.

CLICK HERE for the full details and T&Cs.

Tax-Free Childcare: 10 Things Parents Should Know

Tax-Free Childcare will be available to around 2 million households to help with the cost of childcare, enabling more parents to go out to work, if they want to, to provide greater security for their families.

To find out about all the government’s childcare offers visit the Childcare Choices website.

Ten things to know about Tax-Free Childcare: Click Here

All Stars Cricket - Across the UK

Do you want to get your kids outdoors and more active this summer?

All Stars Cricket is a brand-new programme from the England and Wales Cricket Board, which is aimed at girls and boys aged 5-8. It’s a fun, first-time experience of cricket which develops your child’s movement skills.

They can learn; catching, throwing, hitting a moving ball and teamwork – all whilst making new friends in a safe and inclusive environment.

All Stars Cricket starts in May 2017 and they have over 1,500 centres across the country. It’s an 8-week course and each session lasts one hour. Sessions are run by trained and accredited activators and Mum and Dad are encouraged to take part too, so you can spend some time with the kids.

Once you are signed up to the All Stars Cricket club, your child will receive a personalised pack, which includes; a backpack, cricket bat, water bottle, cap and shirt!

For further details, and to register CLICK HERE

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Education in Scotland - An Introductory Guide for Service Families

Education in Scotland – An Introductory Guide has been produced with the full backing of the Scottish Government, and provides personnel either in Scotland or moving to Scotland with a comprehensive guide to all phases of education, with handy information and advice. 

The document can be viewed at

Transition information Sheet 10 - Resilience and Wellbeing

To read, download or print this information sheet

Forces Help to Buy Scheme. Q&A

A helpful Q&A page about the Forces Help to Buy Scheme has been published on the Evolution Forces Families website.

Q: Is Forces help to buy the same as government help to buy?

A: No it isn’t. Forces Help to Buy is very different from the standard Help to Buy scheme and they are not to be confused with each other. There are in fact a number of other Help to Buy schemes available,

For further questions and answers CLICK HERE

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

British Forces Post Office (BFPO) Smart Phone apps

You can find BFPO numbers, find UK retailers who post products to BFPO addresses, and calculate your postage costs by downloading:

the BFPO app for Apple devices

the BFPO app for Android devices

You can find out when your items will be delivered by downloading:

You can only use these apps to track mail in the BFPO system. You may have to use other websites or apps to track mail sent to a UK address.

New Home Office Immigration and Nationality Fees from 6th April 2017

Immigration and nationality fees for all applications made from outside and within the UK.

This document tells you how much it costs to apply for a UK visa from 6 April 2017 and includes previous fees. It shows fees for all visas including:

- visitor
- work
- student
- settlement
- naturalisation

Click HERE to see new fees

Seal and Wildlife Watching Trips from Ramsgate

Take a trip to an active seal colony inside a National Nature Reserve which also has the benefits of a wide range of birds including the rare ingret. We time these trips to coincide with tidal flows for the best chance of seeing these wonderful mammals in their natural habitat.

Ideal for all the family and brilliant for photographs, so remember to bring your camera so you can capture your experience onboard the boat.

£20 per head, duration approx 1 ½ hours.  Trips run from 1 Apr 2017 - 25 Oct 2017

Early booking is advisable for any alternative date please contact us and we will see what we can do for you

For further information CLICK HERE