Armed forces

Support available for veterans and serving troops moving to civilian life or moving areas.

Moving from military to civilian life or re-locating from one area to another can be challenging for veterans or serving troops and their families. The information provided here is aimed at providing practical advice, guidance and support. Argyll and Bute Council is committed to strengthening ties between those who serve or have served in the armed forces and the communities in which they work and live.

The council is also supporting the Ministry of Defence Firm Base initiative, which was set up to create stronger relationships between local authorities and the military services. A dedicated council contact has been appointed and a formal programme of meetings will be put in place.

Read our brochure

Moving from military to civilian life or relocating from one area to another can be challenging for veterans or serving troops and their families. The information provided in Argyll and Bute Council’s ‘Welcoming our Armed Forces’ brochure offers practical advice, guidance and support.:

If you have any questions, please contact the Member Services Team in the first instance - please note that the brochure was accurate at time of printing.  

Welcoming our armed forces - information for serving personnel and veterans brochure >

Welcoming our Armed Forces families

Our leaflet aims to provide information for Armed Forces families about schools, early learning and childcare provision in the area, such as advice on the transition to the Scottish Education system, a detailed explanation of how our 3 - 18 education system works and how to identify their catchment school. It also provides a guide on how parents can enrol their child, even when they are awaiting allocation of service family accommodation.

Welcoming our Armed Forces - Information for families of serving personnel and veterans in the Helensburgh and Lomond area

Introduction to Argyll and Bute

Relocating to Argyll and Bute could be one of the most rewarding moves you and your family will ever make. Living and working in Argyll and Bute offers the best of all worlds – a temperate Gulf-stream climate and a stimulating cultural community, set in beautiful landscape with easy access to central Scotland and beyond. An accessible and affordable range of transport options - ferry, rail, air and road – link island and mainland locations with both Scotland’s urban central belt and the remote and spectacular landscape of the Highlands.

Argyll and Bute Council covers a vast area on the west coast of Scotland, with 2,700 miles of coastline, 23 inhabited islands, and six towns. Physically, the area is stunning. Our wild and rugged countryside, mountains, lochs and coastline are home to a fascinating range of flora and fauna, provide inspiration for a lively artistic community, and offer unparalleled leisure opportunities. Our population of 89,590 live mainly in the six bustling local towns but also in friendly rural communities and on some of the best known of Scotland’s islands, each with its own unique culture and characteristics.

Sport and leisure facilities in the area include Aqualibrium in Campbeltown and the Riverside Swim and Health Centre in Dunoon. Oban’s Corran Halls and Dunoon’s Queen’s Hall play host to a range of local and national performers, and the region attracts visitors from across the globe to high profile sporting events such as the Tiree Wave Classic – a world famous windsurfing event.

One of the most family-friendly environments in Scotland, Argyll and Bute strives to offer the best possible start in life to young people. Local schools are consistently highly rated against national benchmarks - our primary schools consistently exceed national targets in reading, writing and mathematics. In national tests, Argyll and Bute is at the top end of Scottish attainment. Over 90% of the region’s secondary pupils gain at least five standard grades, around 20% are awarded three or more Highers, and a higher than average number of pupils from the region go onto higher education.

Find out about all schools in Argyll and Bute

The Community Covenant Partnership

Key local organisations have been brought together by the council in the Argyll and Bute Community Covenant Partnership to share knowledge, experience and expertise and to give active and positive support to the armed forces community.  The Argyll and Bute Armed Forces and Community Partnership meets quarterly.

Covenant Grant Fund – Local Partnership Board

Funding is available from the Covenant Fund Trust and further details can be found here Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust

Prior to submission, applicants are encouraged to make contact with their Local Partnership Board.  The Local Board for Argyll and Bute meets quarterly prior to the deadline for Covenant Fund applications and will provide feedback and support to applicants.  For further details on the Local Partnership Board please contact Shona Barton, Area Committee Manager ( Tel: 01436 657605.

Schools in the Helensburgh and Lomond area have also benefitted from the MOD Education support Fund, with additional support for teaching staff, family liaison and training opportunities.

Faslane Maritime Change Programme

On 27 February 2017, the Argyll and Bute Community Planning Partnership and the Royal Navy formally agreed to work together on a mutually supportive relationship to maximise  community benefit as a result of  significant investment into HMNB Clyde. 

This agreement formalises the ‘Strategic Delivery and Development Framework’ (SDDF) which sets out the governance and joint working in relation to education, economy and regeneration, community facilities, communications and engagement, infrastructure and transportation and accommodation.

Further details, including the agendas and minutes of the board meetings are available here on our website - Faslane Maritime Change Programme

Defence Employer Recognition Scheme


Argyll and Bute Council is committed to ensuring that those who serve, have served and their families are treated with fairness and respect. We are proud holders of the Silver Defence Employer Recognition Award and work closely with the armed forces community in many areas. We are an ‘Armed Forces Friendly’ organisation.

As an employer, we recognise that employees may have commitments as members of the Reserve Forces that may result in them being called upon in support of the Regular Forces. We provide support for this and provide up to 15 days paid leave to attend annual camp. We are also committed to seeking to better support Cadet Force Adult Volunteers who are employees.

Recognising that experience in the armed forces brings many rich and valuable transferable skills, we welcome job applications from veterans who meet the essential criteria for posts and assess all applications free from discrimination. We are committed to working with the Career Transition Partnership in the recruitment of service leavers. We value enormously the skills of our current employees who are Armed Forces Veterans and have welcomed them warmly into the Argyll and Bute Council family.

We also recognise the excellent skills and confidence that young people learn from being in the Cadets. We are working with Developing the Young Workforce in Argyll to promote and share that experience as well as looking to provide opportunities for cadets to gain insight about the council by participating in events.

We are happy to attend meetings or other events to speak about the Council’s relationship with the Armed Forces to support other employers and to share experiences on how we deliver on our Armed Forces Covenants.

Mini Stretch Days and Leadership Outreach Programmes

The council recognises the value that serving personnel, reservists, veterans and cadets bring to an organisation. In attending mini executive stretch days and weekend camps, employees are offered a unique opportunity to learn more about the transferable skills gained as well as the support offered by reservists to the forces community.

Our Commitment

To make sure we deliver on our commitment as an employer, we have pledged to:

  • Employ of veterans and reservists, working with the Career Transition Partnership (CTP) and the Officers Association Scotland, to offer work placements and the opportunity of a pathway into working for the Council for service leavers
  • We endeavour to offer a degree of flexibility in granting leave for service spouses and partners before, during and after a partner’s deployment
  • Support our employees who choose to be members of the Reserve forces, including by accommodating their training and deployment where possible
  • We will actively encourage other organisations within Argyll and Bute to promote supporting opportunities for the Armed Forces
  • We actively participate and host Armed Forces Day on an annual basis
  • We will support and encourage the employment of Reservists, Veterans and their families, ensuring that they are not disadvantaged when it comes to application procedures
  • We will offer support to our local cadet units where appropriate
  • We will actively work with the Highland Reserve Forces and Cadet Association
  • We will explore the establishment of an Armed Forces Network and employee Veteran focus group

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