Know Your Forces, Know Your People

Know your forces

Our servicemen and women in the armed forces play a vital role in ensuring the places where we live are safe and secure. As Armed Forces Week kicks off today, we all take a moment to acknowledge the dedication and utter commitment these men and women have for the safety of British citizens on home soil and abroad.

At Countryside, we are proud to support current and former servicemen and women. Currently, there are over 60 members of staff connected to the forces either themselves or through their family members. Our commitment is embodied in the Armed Forces Covenant which we signed last year with the Royal Engineers, which aims to double our efforts in recruiting employees with military connections over the next five years. Our programme helps military heroes transition into civilian life in a smooth as possible manner, ensuring their skillset is used in a meaningful way.

We want these individuals to realise that once they have retired from their posts, that their livelihoods do not end there. We value the skills, qualities, and sense of purpose these men and women carry and feel that there is a place for them within our very own community; that is why we welcome them with open arms. To showcase the breadth of talent that the armed forces creates, we spoke to Will Bower who had a story to tell on the influence the armed forces has had on him.

Will Bower, Finance Analyst 

“My upbringing helped me to understand and respect different walks of life,” Will starts off by saying. Growing up on a RAF base in Germany might not be a usual childhood for a young boy, but it was for Will. His father’s posting with the British Army to Germany saw Will living abroad for nine years until the age of 11 before enrolling at a military school in Dover. 

Will reiterates his admiration for his father and mother’s work; both of whom were highly accomplished in their fields. Will’s father reached the highly respected rank of Major before retiring in 2006, having served right across the world including Northern Ireland, the Gulf region and former Yugoslavia. Most interestingly, he is one of the few personnel that has served across all three arms of the British Armed Forces, having been attached to the RAF and currently with the Royal Navy’s Fleet Air Arm. Will’s mother had always dreamt of becoming a nurse. Her unwavering commitment to others saw her in wide-ranging roles and places over the years through serving in the Queen Alexandra’s Royal Army Nursing Corps, notably as a Nursing Sister during the Falklands War. She now works in a private nursing home caring for the elderly.

His parents’ colourful careers and innate sense of service has been instilled in him from an early age. He comments, “Seeing my parents have such rewarding careers has driven me to realise I want the same. I want to apply my experience to my work and grow within a company that will foster that same belief.” Despite not pursuing a military career himself, the values Will has adopted from his parents continue to guide him through life and at work here in Countryside. 

The armed forces provides its men and women with a highly desirable skillset, one which can easily be transferred to other careers, including the construction industry. We are proud to be a housebuilder which supports these ex-veterans to expand on their professional goals.