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Supporting the Armed Forces community

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Our BIGGEST Project yet, REVEALED!

See page 4-5

Profile Raising See page 6-7

Helping our Gurkhas See page 15 Twitter @RBLI


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2011 in numbers

Page 4-5

A monster project

Page 6-7

Profile raising

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Workplace Solutions

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LifeWorks update

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David’s Day Christmas party

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Carillion contract Dinner at the Round House

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Christmas tree MOD contract

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Working for Crawley Social media

In this Warblings, the first edition of 2012, we start off with a bang! This issue is a new record in a number of ways, from the amount of content submitted by staff, through to the number of new contributors and for the bumper amount of pages included. You may have noticed that we’ve started to bring our news to you not only in Warblings, but online by utlising our press releases and social media pages. Because of this, you will notice that this edition has barcodes on some pages. These are called quick response codes (QR codes) and can be scanned with most smart phones to take you directly to online videos or news relating to the article. Thank you to everyone who has written something, provided an interview or taken photos this time round. It’s obvious throughout this edition, that we have been doing so many exciting things recently, and long may the good work continue throughout 2012. If you would like to submit an article or inform the team about an event please email:

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Armastice day

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Working together for Yuvaraj

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Leatherhead news

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Brownies visit Bygone days

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Employee of the month Service & training awards

Also, just a reminder, if you can spot the RBLI duck in this issue, email us with the page number you found him on. If you’re lucky enough to be picked as the winner, we’ll send you a box of chocolates!

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New equipment

Will Gowin

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LifeWorks testimonial


2011 IN NUMBERS When reviewing RBLI’s achievements in 2011 my eye was quickly drawn towards a series of numbers. On the new Work Programme we enabled 350 people to find employment and have started assisting 4700 individuals who are long term unemployed.

We have given employment and training information, advice and guidance to 5224 members of the Armed Forces community through the Civvy Street programme. LifeWorks, our new vocational assessment service, has worked with 45 wounded, injured and sick ex service personnel through bespoke residential courses. There have been 65 members of the Armed Forces attend the Army Recovery Courses here in Aylesford.

Our village is now home to 3 young ex-Gurkhas, one of whom has recently started

employment in our Signs Department where we have produced over 36,000 road and rail signs in the last 12 months. The pallets department has built 237,000 new pallets and has inspected, maintained and returned to the system 510,000 other pallets. We are proud to have 88 disabled workers in our work force, some of whom assisted in the putting together of 300,000 pieces of K’NEX to construct a range of toy displays for global use.

Our village hosts 50 people in our high dependency care home, 38 in our assisted living home and a further 137 in our houses. We employ and help train 3 new apprentices and hope that this number will grow in 2012.

Three members of our Senior Management Team, with a combined age of 153, successfully completed the

Maidstone Half Marathon in October and the hope is that the number of RBLI runners will increase in 2012 thereby reducing the average age of participants! In December we hosted and entertained 54 local children with special needs at a Christmas Party as part of our own charitable contribution to our community. Money for this event was raised within RBLI and from generous donations from many of our key partners.

A total of 300 RBLI staff made all of the above numbers happen. Of course, the numbers merely give some idea of scale of effort. What is less easy to describe is the dedication, passion and commitment that is required to deliver such high quality services that I see as I visit all of our activities. I do hope that this winter edition of Warblings will, through articles and photographs, better illustrate the work of RBLI and all our staff. May I wish you a very happy 2012. Steve Sherry


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A MONSTER PROJECT charitable programs such as the innovative guidance course designed for the Armed Forces Community LifeWorks.

David Church, Head of Assembly at RBLI says, ‘It’s been such an exciting project for us. The team here have really come together and shown that despite the challenges faced by their disabilities, no project is too big!’ We are extremely pleased to announce that our fulfilment team have assembled a lifesize Monster Truck entirely out of K’NEX parts! RBLI teamed up with Monster Jam and American construction toy company K’NEX to build the ambitious structure. The life-size model was built by RBLI to commemorate the 30th Anniversary of the world famous Grave Digger monster truck and 20th Anniversary of K’NEX.

Monster Jam fans were astonished to see the impressive structure – as it 4 RBLI WARBLINGS Newsletter

‘came alive’ after being fitted with custom tyres – during a Monster Jam pre show party at the Alamodome Stadium in San Antonio, Texas on Saturday, January 14th, 2012. Within their 15-year partnership RBLI and K’NEX have built a variety of models but none that challenge the scale of the Grave Digger monster truck. The truck required months of planning and took the RBLI assembly team 1,000 hours to connect close to a quarter of a million K’NEX pieces. RBLI provide support and employment to people with disabilities or health conditions, particularly those from the Armed forces. The successes made from commercial activities such as the Monster Jam Grave Digger 30th Anniversary K’NEX monster truck are re-invested into RBLI’s

The Truck will spend the remainder of the year touring North America, accompanied by a specially trained team, able to make any necessary repairs that the Monster Truck may require as it tours from city to city. When the tour completes, this oneof-a-kind monster truck will reside at Digger’s Dungeon in North Carolina, a museum dedicated to the history of Grave Digger, where it will remain as a symbol of RBLI’s assembly skill and monster truck engineering for fans to admire for many years. The project has been documented from its construction in Kent, England, to its final reveal in Texas, America. For more info log onto, or follow RBLI on Facebook and Twitter @RBLI :

Scott Redfern from Logipal driving the fork truck while loading up the Monster Truck.

The Assembly Team, from left to right: Alec Brown, Judy Barsby, David Church, Sean Reed, Nick Hopkins, Keith Harris, Sean Tuffrey, Geoff Cruden, Graham Cherry, Paul Norman.

Nigel Chambers and Mick Buffini from Pallets created the lifting cradle to support the truck into the container.

Neil Roberts and John Perkins from the signs department created the graphics for the Monster Truck. The truck residing in front of the Alamodome Stadium in San Antonio, Texas.

Others involved in helping build the Monster Truck: Steve Acland and Janice Sylvester.

For videos of the Monster Truck, Scan here with your Smart Phone RBLI WARBLINGS Newsletter 5

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PROFILE RAISING IAIN DUNCAN SMITH On Friday 25th November RBLI welcomed The Rt Hon Iain Duncan Smith MP, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions and Tracey Crouch MP for Chatham and Aylesford. The Minister met many RBLI employees as we explained how our Social Enterprise fits neatly into the Big Society Agenda.

At the same time, RBLI hosted a meeting of representatives from KCC, Jobcentre Plus, G4S and Service Charities; including the Poppy Factory and Royal British Legion to explore how organisations could work together more effectively to improve access to services for former Armed Forces personnel seeking work. We were able to feedback to the Minister some suggestions for quick and easy wins that would ensure better data capture and integration of services to enable us all to offer the widest range of services to former Armed Forces personnel. Thus ensuring we can work together to help meet the principles of the Military Covenant. The Secretary of State displayed a genuine feel and understanding of the work of RBLI and the visit was a most positive stimulus for all involved.

The Minister also had an opportunity to meet some of the Armed Forces personnel attending our LifeWorks course who had sustained life changing injuries or illness. They explained to him how the vocational assessment and employability training they had received during the week would help them to understand their employment options and compete more effectively for civilian work opportunities. the privilege of welcoming the High Sheriff of Kent, Mrs Georgie Warner and her husband Charles Warner during an informal tour of the RBLI Social Enterprise and Care Homes in Aylesford.

HIGH SHERIFF OF KENT On Thursday 6th October RBLI’s Chairman, Edwin Boorman and Chief Executive, Steve Sherry had 6 RBLI WARBLINGS Newsletter

Mrs Warner was extremely impressed with our range of services and met with many of our beneficiaries. She even got hands on with some of the assembly and fulfilment projects that we deliver for many blue chip organisations across the UK.

Mrs Warner expressed her surprise at the sheer number of services RBLI provide for disabled and vulnerable people, saying that she would certainly spread word of our work on her travels throughout Kent.

MIKE PENNING Here he was pleased to be presented with a personalised road sign, specially made by our team.

As you may have already been aware, RBLI have successfully secured contracts to supply signs for roads, rail and airports all across the south-east. Following on from this great accomplishment, on the 3rd November, we were visited by Mike Penning MP, the Parliamentary under Secretary of State for Transport. The Minister had formerly heard of our work and was particularly interested to see, firsthand, exactly what we could deliver in our signs department.

During the visit, Mike Penning was given a tour of our Signs Shop whilst being informed of our work and meeting the staff. He was extremely impressed by what we do and proudly congratulated our team’s great success in securing contracts to supply signs for roads, rail and airports.

Mike Penning was later escorted around other parts of the organisation, where he was able to meet some of our beneficiaries; he stated that he was “genuinely impressed with our passion and commitment” and that he “had heard a lot of good things about RBLI, but had no idea of the breadth of support that RBLI offer.”

This was a great day for RBLI, as we continue to impress others of by the achievements and the great work that we accomplish!

To watch the RBLI Mike Penning news report, Scan here with your Smart Phone


On 27th September, Viscount De L’Isle, Lord Lieutenant of Kent became the new president of RBLI. We were honoured to welcome The Lord Lieutenant and The Viscountess De L’Isle to Aylesford on Wednesday 23rd November, where the Lord Lieutenant spoke with staff in the Social Enterprise Signs Department and produced his own sign. As a former officer in the Grenadier Guards, Viscount De L’Isle was particularly interested in meeting the staff and students on the LifeWorks course and seeing the level of vocational assessment, information and advice that RBLI provides to Veterans with disabilities or health conditions. The final part of the day was a tour of RBLI’s high dependency care home, Gavin Astor House and the assisted living home, Queen Elizabeth Court, where Linda Alder, Head of Healthcare and Welfare and former Chief Accountant of TRBL, John Riggs welcomed our visitors. RBLI WARBLINGS Newsletter 7

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Following a number of successful pilot programmes and training events, RBLI proudly launches Workplace Solutions to supplement our growing range of commercial services. Built upon our experience of providing employability services to the Armed Forces and Government programmes, through the summer of 2011 RBLI has embarked on a process of developing a model for the delivery of this support to commercial organisations. Aided by the Training and Assessment Team, Emma Carty took on the substantial task of transforming an existing range of employability and staff-retention facilities into a series of modular courses

and assistance programmes flexible enough to be focused for a number of industries and delivery models. “By taking a step back and looking at the personnel challenges that employers are experiencing today, we found that RBLI needed to take a very different approach to the commercial market” explains Emma. “No two businesses are the same, so there is no one-size-fits–all method for delivering health and wellbeing in the workplace.” Providing a consultative approach to personnel issues, RBLI’s Workplace Solutions service offers employers and HR professionals the opportunity for genuine thirdparty appraisals of current work practices, and provides a targeted approach towards

finding an amicable solution to sustaining the employment of valued staff. By delivering a range of tailored training courses structured around stress, ability and legal obligations developed inhouse, alongside a follow-up programme of assessments and in work support, Workplace Solutions are able to provide focused practical support for unique employees. For more information, contact Emma Carty on 01622 795925 or email:

For more info about Workplace Solutions, Scan here with your Smart Phone 8 RBLI WARBLINGS Newsletter

L I F E W O R K S U P D AT E has extensive experience of providing successful vocational support to the Armed Forces and individuals with disabilities since 1919. Understanding the commitments that we all The transition to civilian life experience during times can be a challenging process of change, RBLI have for all Armed Forces leavers, structured the courses to and even more so for those give the maximum level medically retired due to of flexibility. LifeWorks injury, health condition can be provided over the or disability. Having a phone, face to face on an range of support services individual basis or as part of available, finding the right the residential LifeWorks+ network of information course at our custom-built and guidance can add to training venue, the Capel the challenge. With this in Morris Centre, on our village mind, RBLI have introduced in Aylesford. LifeWorks, an innovative series of courses designed LifeWorks+ attendees to build on existing skills receive the additional for employment beyond the benefits of a series of Armed Forces. focused employability modules covering the job The core of LifeWorks is a finding and application comprehensive assessment processes. During the 5-day of your background, residential programme, skills and ambitions. By attendees will develop a identifying and developing winning CV reflecting skills your transferable abilities, and qualifications gained LifeWorks builds you an in the military, as well as individual action plan and experiencing real interview provides ongoing guidance situations delivered from to progress towards your a range of industries. goals. Recently incorporated In most cases LifeWorks is into the programme is a delivered fully-subsidised unique Coaching for Change to the Armed Forces module designed to boost Community. If you are confidence for Civvy Street, an Armed Forces leaver and give attendees the tools looking to improve your to overcome obstacles that employability potential, RBLI could hold them back from

working. Senior Aircraftman Andrew Hughes faced a number of challenges during the move to Civvy Street. Following a back injury, Andrew found the guidance and direction he needed through LifeWorks +: “I had a really low opinion of myself before coming on the course, but the five days on it made me feel positive about myself again. I’ve just been lacking self-belief and that’s the main element this course has delivered to me. Self-belief and the tools to help me execute my plan of action.”

For more information on RBLI’s LifeWorks courses, call their specialist team free on 0800 319 6844 or visit

For info about LifeWorks, Scan with a Smart Phone RBLI WARBLINGS Newsletter 9

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DAVID’S DAY CHRISTMAS PARTY A group of children with disabilities, their parents and carers were visited by Santa at a Christmas party at RBLI’s Capel Moris Centre, thanks to the combined efforts of our RBLI team and Maidstone Special NeedS Support Service (M4S). We would also like to thank Partyman Entertainment, The Reindeer Centre and Vincents Catering for their excellent services. 54 children from Kent were invited to the party, where they enjoyed party food, face painting, an entertainment show and meeting Santa and his reindeers. Funds for the children’s event were raised at our charitable golf day and raffle at Broke Hill Golf Club in September, which was attended by Jonathan Shaw, Brachers, Centor, Clague, G4S, Olive Communications, TnS Catering, TSP, Activa. We would also like to thank members of the Rowlands family who also donated funds for the event. Steve Sherry said of the event, “RBLI was proud to host this children’s event which was thoroughly enjoyed by 10 RBLI WARBLINGS Newsletter

everyone who attended. We are grateful to those Organisations that helped to provide the funding for this event and hope that we will be able to make this an annual occasion. We must also thank M4S for their help with the organisation of the event; a great example of working in partnership to put together a great event for the children, parents and carers.”

Ailsa McMahon, Manager of M4S added “We are grateful to RBLI for approaching us and hosting the party. This was a great opportunity for us to reach out and meet more families with disabled children and to be able to bring them together and for them to learn more about M4S. New families came along and were thrilled to be able to join in the fun. Many told us they would love it if we could offer more family days. We will continue to work to provide this type of opportunity, assuming we can continue to raise funds.’’ Parents and children had a great time. One mum said, ‘My son Charlie had a

great day, he really enjoyed meeting Santa and his reindeers. The whole thing was just brilliant for all of us.’ RBLI hosted the event in memory of David Rowlands MBE, a former Director of RBLI. One of his many passions was enhancing the lives of people with disabilities. When David passed away unexpectedly in 2008, RBLI decided to establish ‘David’s Day,’ a day out for children with disabilities and their families, in his memory. In May 2009 the first ‘David’s Day’ was held with 50 children enjoying a day of traditional entertainment and ride on the Kent and East Sussex Railway.

Our aim is to host different events each year and invite along around 50 children with disabilities and their parents/carers. We’re looking for volunteers to form a David’s Day Working Group for the 2012 event; if you’d like to be involved please contact Liz Rickaby on 01622 795948.


DINNER AT THE ROUNDHOUSE On the 13th October, RBLI attended ‘Dinner at the Roundhouse’ the railway industry’s top networking event in Derby. RBLI was the ‘Sponsored Charity of the evening,’ and rewarded with the funds raised from raffle donations. The networking event was held in the very same building that George Stephenson, the pioneer of the railways, stood to admire his handiwork over 160 years ago.

I’m pleased to announce further success from our Social Enterprise! On the 15th November we achieved the status of ‘Accredited’ supplier of signage for Carillion plc; this is one of the UK’s leading support service companies. So we will now be supplying signage across the whole of the Carillion Group! On the behalf of RBLI, Robert James said that “we are really pleased that Carillion recognises the commercial and social opportunities that arise from accrediting RBLI as a supplier.” He went on to say, “for RBLI, the accreditation means we can expand the portfolio of products that we supply into Carillion, which in turn helps us to achieve our aim of expanding the employment opportunities for our beneficiaries.” We are all aware of the great work that we do here at RBLI, but it’s always a major boost for us to have this acknowledged by external organisations. We have a long-term aim to provide more employment opportunities at RBLI and becoming an approved supplier to Carillion is yet another step in our journey to achieving this!

The event was host to various high profile executives from train operating companies and suppliers, across the UK. Virgin Trains, Carillion, Network Rail and 1st Group to name but a few of the guests who attended. We hope that by being the sponsored charity of the evening, we have contributed to raising RBLI’s profile within this industry. The raffle, drawn by Pat Jennings - Northern Ireland’s Goalkeeper between 1964-86, raised a grand total of £3370.70. So we would like to take the opportunity to declare a huge thank you to everyone who contributed to the donations raised. We would also like to show our appreciation to Mainspring for organising ‘Dinner at the Roundhouse,’ all of their support throughout the evening and providing us with the opportunity to raise this vast amount of money!

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CHRISTMAS TREE RBLI’s Fulfilment Department, erected a Christmas tree outside of St. Peter and St. Paul church in Aylesford, for a competition to build the most realistic tree. The St. Peter & St. Paul Christmas Tree Festival, had many different entries including RBLI’s. Steve Hammond, Assembly Manager, completed a great job arranging our entry in the competition and transporting all the gear to the Church.

Steve took some of the team from fulfilment to the church, where the model Christmas tree was to be built. Also involved in the project were designers Alec Brown, Nick Hopkins and Sean Reed. When fully completed the tree stood roughly seven foot high and took about four days to build. The Christmas tree competition ran from the 3-4th of December and then again from the 10-11th of December. It was a fantastic way to engage people in the local community and bring them together. This was a great profile raising event for RBLI as it


We are proud to announce a new framework agreement between the Ministry of Defence and the Social Enterprise division of RBLI. This framework acts as a partnership agreement guaranteeing the supply of high quality signmaking materials to the Royal Engineers, with our Kent sign factory being ideally located locally to the corps’ Regimental Headquarters. With the diverse nature of the military engineering and technical support that the Royal Engineers provide to the British Armed Forces, it was imperative that they were able to source a secure and adaptable channel for the procurement of these materials. RBLI is not only able to meet these requirements, but also able to guarantee that the income from 12 RBLI WARBLINGS Newsletter

gave us media coverage on the radio and television. A television crew covered the St. Peter & St. Paul festival, including the Christmas tree competition, with Sean Reed providing an interview for the Meridian Weatherman, Simon Parkin. RBLI’s customer K’NEX received publicity and regional news coverage thanks to the competition featuring a tree made out of their product. The fulfilment team finished building the tree and got great satisfaction from the four days it had taken them to complete. Alex Brimson this service will be re-invested into support for those leaving the Armed Forces.

In addition to receiving competitively priced signage delivered with industry leading service levels, our customers also benefit from the knowledge that every £25,000 of products purchased enable us to employ an additional Beneficiary on a full time basis. The annual value of this new supply agreement will sustain employment for an additional 2 beneficiaries within our signage division.

WORKING FOR CRAWLEY On the 16th September RBLI and the MP for Crawley, Henry Smith, co-hosted a meeting of organisations committed to making the Work Programme work. Chaired by Henry Smith, the meeting was held in the RBLI/G4S Work Programme office in Crawley and included representatives from G4S, RBLI, Crawley Councillors, the Principal of Central Sussex College, Richmond Fellowship and Job Centre Plus, amongst others.


It goes without saying that a combined group of 750 million people would have a lot of influence. This gathering would dwarf all but the two largest countries in the world by population, and have a buying power more than twice that of the USA. Believe it or not, this group is Facebook. In 2011 RBLI took the bold step of opening itself to

Sean Williams, Managing Director of G4S Work Programme, stated that ‘Work Programme is the most ambitious plan to tackle worklessness that has ever been seen.’ He went on to explain that it was aimed at ‘not just finding employment, but sustaining people in employment.’

Martin Derby, a RBLI consultant working in the Crawley office, related two powerful testimonies from his clients which demonstrated the breadth of support that we provide to our customers. Lenny Walker, a Crawley Councillor, said that the Work Programme has a real need the world through social networking; not just with Facebook, but also via Twitter, LinkedIn, and a number of online media services. Quickly amassing followers in the hundreds, RBLI’s Facebook and Twitter pages have become an immediate success, encouraging engagement from the Armed Forces community in particular. To compliment the new online strategy, the main RBLI homepage has also undergone a minor facelift to include easy links to our social media pages, alongside a prominent news feed to keep beneficiaries, customers and supporters of RBLI up to speed with the latest updates on our activities, “it’s an exciting time for us,”

for partnerships and that our commitment to organising these events to bring people together was crucial to the development of those partnerships.

Overall the day was a great success and was well received by everyone that attended. Our aim is to organise more of these events with the intention of building closer links between RBLI and other organisations in the areas we provide the Work Programme. explains the Marketing team’s Will Gowin, “social media gives unlimited potential for RBLI to communicate with new audiences, and to raise our profile.” Employees of RBLI are actively encouraged to comment on and engage with our social media sites whenever appropriate as this community builds. The Marketing team are also particularly keen to hear of any company-related news stories or media you may have that would be suitable for promotion through social networking. You can email content to: or contact extension 286 to discuss any potential submissions. RBLI WARBLINGS Newsletter 13

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A R M I S T I C E D AY Although the main remembrance service is held on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month of every year, the Church services’ have been moved to the second Sunday of every November, to make the service more accessible. In the two minutes observed by the Church, the first minute of silence observed remembers the passed soldiers, the second is for the living bereaved. The Remembrance Day service now incorporates all those lost in war past and present. Armistice Day, or Remembrance Day as is commonly known, falls on the eleventh hour, of the eleventh day, of the eleventh month every year. This is so that we don’t forget those that have given their lives so that we may live in the free and democratic world that we do today. It originally commemorated the Armistice agreement, signed between the Allies of World War One and Germany, which took place at Compiegne, France in 1918. On this particular Remembrance Day service, a large group of RBLI employees gathered in the Remembrance Garden. Along with our employees, Tracey Crouch MP for Chatham and Aylesford, and Joyce Gadds Chair of Aylesford Parish Council attended, who together with members of the Gurkha Army laid a wreath in remembrance of those who would not be returning. Thank you to everyone who attended and helped us to honour our Armed Forces Communities. The United Kingdom and Europe were later challenged by the German Army in 1939, in the Second World War. However this war stretched across the oceans, countless countries including North America and Japan became involved as well. 14 RBLI WARBLINGS Newsletter

Alex Brimson “They shall not grow old, as we that are left grow old: Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn At the going down of the sun and in the morning We will remember them.” Laurence Binyon, For the Fallen

W O R K I N G T O G E T H E R F O R Y U VA R A J Foundation Brain Injury Unit in Surrey. During this time various service charities and organistaions were working together to help Yuvaraj plan for transition into civilian life.

We are pleased to have provided Yuvaraj, a former Gurkha, and his family a home, thanks to a collaboration with other service charities and organisations in Kent. Yuvaraj (centre left pictured with comrades) served in the 1st Battalion of the Royal Gurkha Rifles, in Afghanistan. During his time serving in HM Forces, he developed vision and hearing problems, which were eventually diagnosed as a brain tumour. He was transferred back to the UK where he underwent an operation to remove the tumour; residual complications left him with permanent health issues, including severe memory difficulties and reduced vision. Because of his ongoing care needs Yuvaraj is unable to live independently and requires daily support from friends and family.

Prior to being medically discharged, Yuvaraj spent a year recovering and gaining back his independence at the Queen Elizabeth

‘It’s been great to see all of these organisations working to support Yuvaraj and his family during his recovery,’ said Geoff Humphreys, RBLI’s Head of Property Services, who presented Yuvaraj with the keys to his new home on Friday 25th November. ‘We at RBLI are really proud to be able to offer this support to our Armed Forces Community including our returning Gurkhas.’ RBLI provided resettlement accommodation in Aylesford, Kent and supported the family moving in.

The organisations that assisted Yuvaraj’s transition back into the community include The Army Welfare Service, Headley Court, 1st Battalion Royal Gurkha Rifles, Folkestone Social Services, Kent Immigration Advisory Service, The Army Benevolent Fund, Help for Heroes, and St Dunstan’s. RBLI WARBLINGS Newsletter 15

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L E AT H E R H E A D N E W S We have had another good year at RBLI Leatherhead, fulfilling our annual campaigns for Movember (men’s health charity), Dreamtime Events, Civil Service Benevolent Fund (civil servants charity) and Rainbow Trust (charity for children and families). We have also been packing high quality foods and drinks into hampers and dispatching on behalf of online grocery store Partridges. On top of which we’ve been processing more activities for Matrix.

Our mailing work for Ice Gripper’s traction products has increased as people are preparing for the worst of the winter weather. We have been able to offer a new service, personalised

cards, for many commercial companies, parliamentary offices, charities and individuals. Down to this our Christmas card work has increased significantly in 2011. This overall increase in work activity has been very much welcomed.

We are pleased to announce to Warblings readers one of our newest clients. Over the past few months we have been working closely with Veritas, an exclusive gift and jewellery supplier, who have provided opportunities with the McLaren F1 team. We look forward to developing a strong relationship with Veritas and meeting their requirements. In other news, a therapeutic

BIRTHS Welcome to Liam James Tandy, who was born on 14th October (seen here with proud big sister Jade). Liam was born at 11.20am, weighing 8lb, 7oz and measuring 55cm long. Liam’s mum, Kate Tandy, would like to thank ‘everyone at RBLI for Liam’s wonderful gift!’

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treatment day was kindly donated to our staff by Holistic Harmony, sending several members of their staff to our site. Our employees were really impressed and we would like to thank Holistic Harmony for their generously offered health services. We would also like to welcome our new starter Hayden Vaughan, from the RBLI Specialist Delivery Bank and say farewell to Helen Clapham who retired. Helen was a tremendous asset to RBLI Leatherhead and worked with us over 20 years, she will be greatly missed. Everyone here at the Leatherhead site would like to take this opportunity to wish you all the very best for 2012! Please feel free to arrange a visit to our site in the New Year and see first hand how versatile we can be in fulfilment, printing, mailing and dispatch.


well as hear them singing, We wish you a Merry Christmas, Away in a Manger and When Santa got stuck up the Chimney, to name a few. With residents’ permission and with myself present at all times, the Brownies went into the residents’ rooms, six children at a time and sang. The rest of the children stayed with Brown Owl and sang in the corridor for all to hear. All of the visitors wanted to enter the rooms, so we had to ensure everyone got a turn!

The Aylesford Brownies visited Gavin Astor House to sing Christmas Carols to our residents in late November.

The Brownies sang with great enthusiasm and gusto, residents really enjoyed the special visit from the children. Christopher Goodall said ‘It was lovely to see all the children and hear them sing carols, it reminded me of when I was boy singing carols in the choir at church.’

The carers on duty thought it was lovely for the residents to be visited by the children, as

Sarah Winter Gavin Astor House


In the previous instalment of our history I left the story where the last Colpeper to own Preston Hall died in 1723 without an heir leaving the estate to his sister, Lady Alicia Taylor.

Within the grounds of the Hall was a First Class cricket ground. In 1846 and 1847 Kent played Surrey in the ground’s only first-class matches. The last recorded match was between H Brassey’s XI and I Zingari in July 1879.

Lady Taylor had four husbands and one son. She outlived them all including her son who died at the age of 27. She passed away in Preston Hall at the age of 77 in 1734 and was interred in Aylesford Church.

Preston Hall remained in the Milner family (with successive owners adopting the name Milner) until the property was sold to the railway contractor Edward Ladd Betts in 1849. Soon after buying the Hall, Betts demolished it and built the one that stands today in the Jacobean style.

With her passing, ownership of the Hall passed to the brother of her fourth husband, Dr Charles Milner, a physician, who never married. He died in 1771, leaving Preston Hall to his nephew, Rev Joseph Butler, who took the name Milner. During his ownership, the Hall was modernised and partially re-built. Descriptions of Preston Hall from that era range from “a plain, white ugly square building apparently of the Elizabethan age” to “a truly wonderful house with lavishly laid – out gardens, redolent of the wealth and splendour of the families that helped rule England”.

…… to be continued. by the Ancient Mariner RBLI WARBLINGS Newsletter 17

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EMPLOYEE OF THE MONTH A really big well done to Daniel Butler from Operational Delivery for winning Employee of the Month for June, Brian Birch from Manufacturing for July, Lynda Smith from QEC for August, Phil Barros from Business Development for September and Jim Robinson from Operational Delivery for October.

S E RV I C E & T R A I N I N G AWA R D S Congratulations and a big thank you is in order for Jane Holden Administrator at GAH & QEC, Marti Koers Senior Team Leader for the RBLI Domiciliary Care Agency (QEC), Jeanette Bushell Housekeeping Assistant at GAH, Paula Moon Healthcare Assistant on the Night Team in GAH and Kim Watson Senior Healthcare Assistant at GAH for 10 years of dedication and service (above pictured right). We would also like to thank two highly dedicated employees, from manufacturing. Keith Harris (top left) for 30 years service and to Stewart Spoor (bottom left) for 35 years. A truly remarkable display of loyalty to RBLI. The Following Health Care Assistants have achieved their Level 2 Diplomas in Health & Social Care QCF, Kate Morren, Sean Bailey and Cath Church. Also, congratulations to Susan Cairns (North East Team) for achieving her IAG level 4 certificate. 18 RBLI WARBLINGS Newsletter


features are its backlit table, which is useful when positioning translucent materials and a self-sealing protective cover, when using the workbench for cutting out signage.

RBLI has purchased three new pieces of high tech equipment within the signs department, which will increase the range of services provided, increase productivity, save money and improve the quality of work achievable. The first piece of equipment is a modern Rolls Roller, which is used to mount self-adhesive graphics to sign backings. This updates the technology that was previously used, increasing productivity by speeding up the process and reducing the manual labor require by having to rotate rollers by hand. The roller is also repositionable, letting more than one individual work at the station at a time. Other

Phone: 01622 795910

The acquisition of a new top of the range digital printer and laminator will enable RBLI to increase the range of services provided. These new pieces of equipment enable the production of printed banners and posters up to 1.5metres wide, length can be as long as the customer requires. If you have a poster or banner that needs producing and would like a quotation, please call 01622 795900 and ask to speak to the Print Sales Team.

Email: RBLI WARBLINGS Newsletter 19

QUARTER 1 - 2012

LIFEWORKS TESTIMONIAL were. In contrast the RBLI LifeWorks course recognised that you are there for a reason and can address the issues like having a physical or mental disability and how you could bring these issues up at an interview. Being able to discuss my needs in this way has been absolutely brilliant. The other course did not really have those answers I was looking for.

Keith Gardner - Former RAF I served 20 years in the RAF as a Heavy Goods Vehicle driver. It was a job that I loved, I never wanted to leave the RAF. But in January 2011 my back had deteriorated through degenerative disc disease. On top of which I had arthritis and carpel tunnel. I was medically discharged following spinal surgery. After leaving the RAF, I had secured a temporary job and it was looking promising. When that came to an end, I contacted local organisations about employment opportunities. Having told them about my condition, they recommended me for the RBLI LifeWorks course. I was really looking forward to the course as I really struggled with the change from military to civilian life. For example, I’d chosen the temporary job offer because many of the employees that worked there were ex-military. Looking back, I wanted that familiarisation and security within work. The Coaching for Change module of LifeWorks was where I really started to feel an improvement. I now know where I had been making mistakes. That module opened the doors that were holding me back. Prior to LifeWorks, I attended an Interview Techniques course through the official Defence channels. It didn’t really take into account my personal issues, or ask me what my needs 20 RBLI WARBLINGS Newsletter

During LifeWorks there were times when people, including myself, struggled to answer a question, the casual environment and relationship between everyone meant we could revisit questions at our own pace. It was more like a chat between friends than a traditional learning scenario. All the attendees were there for different reasons and at different stages in their careers and life. Some people were a lot more confident than others, and had got set goals. I could tell that even those people were learning from the others who were just starting the transition, whilst those of us who were just beginning the transition learnt as much from the more experienced people on the course as from the training. The inspiration I have received from everyone on the course is just unreal. LifeWorks is not there to force you into a career that you don’t want to do, it’s there for you to find out about yourself and support finding what you want to do. I haven’t decided on a career yet, but I know that from what I have learnt on LifeWorks and with the tools that I have been given, I now know that I can start planning what I want to do and above all I have regained my confidence again. For more information about LifeWorks please email or speak to a consultant for free on 0800 319 6844 LifeWorks is delivered in partnership with ABF The Soldiers’ Charity Designed by Will Gowin © RBLI 2012

Warblings 2012 Q1  

.Royal British Legion Industries' company newsletter Q1 2012 featuring: 2011 Achievments, A Monster Project, LifeWorks, Profile Raising & Ch...

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