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Thursday, 29 March 2018

Events at Blakemere Village, Northwich


Further details can be found HERE

Volunteering Opportunities with Cheshire West & Chester Libraries


Do you have some spare time on Saturday mornings? Hoole library are currently looking for volunteers to help out at the Hoole Community Library. Please apply online if you would like to get involved: http://cwac.co/eTNCT

Wednesday, 28 March 2018

Changes to Applications for Entry to the UK process

Notice from SO1 Engagement Armed Forces Covenant Team:


I am delighted to notify you that on 19 Mar 2018, following extensive MOD, Service Family Federation and Service charity consultation with the Home Office, a new on-line service for Foreign & Commonwealth Armed Forces personnel and their family members seeking entry to the UK was launched by Visa4UK, replacing the previous application process and paper form. As a result of this change, applicants will no longer have to pay the health surcharge and then submit a request for reimbursement.


This has replaced the previous application process and paper form. All new applicants should now submit their applications via Visa4UK https://www.visa4uk.fco.gov.uk/Account/login using the following options on the drop down menu :

  • Reason for visit: Settlement
  • Visa type: HM Forces
  • Visa sub type: (choose the correct category)


The new process applies to those applying for entry to the UK under the following routes, set out in Appendix Armed Forces of the Immigration Rules:


  • A former member of HM Forces on discharge;
  • A fiancĂ© or proposed civil partner of a member of HM Forces;
  • The partner or child of a member of HM Forces applying under Appendix Armed Forces;
  • The partner or child of a foreign or Commonwealth member of HM Forces who is applying under Part 7 transitional arrangements;
  • The partner or child of a British citizen member of HM Forces who is applying under Part 8 transitional arrangements;
  •  The bereaved partner or child of a member of HM forces applying under Appendix Armed Forces;
  • A former Gurkha soldier who was discharged before 1997;
  • The widow of a former Gurkha soldier who was discharged before 1997;
  • The partner or child of a former Gurkha soldier discharged before 1997

Appendix Armed Forces can be found on Gov.UK at www.gov.uk/guidance/immigration-rules/immigration-rules-appendix-armed-forces


Guidance on all the above immigration routes can be found on Gov.UK at https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/armed-forces-modernised-guidance

Ofsted: Cheshire West has the best secondary schools in the North West


Children who attend secondary schools in the Cheshire West and Chester Council area are receiving the best education in the North West, according to Ofsted.
Further information from Cheshire West HERE

Monday, 26 March 2018

Joint Service Housing Advice Office (JSHAO) - Housing Briefs 2018

MOT Changes from 20 May 2018

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MOT rules change this May 2018.

Full details here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/mot-changes-20-may-2018

Visa price increases from 6th April 2018:

See the breakdown of prices on the AFF website using this link: AFF

Full document available on the Government website:  Home Office immigration and nationality fees from 6 April 2018


AFF wins change to visa process for Army families

AFF has fought tirelessly for five years for an ‘Armed Forces’ option to be available to Foreign & Commonwealth (F&C) families when applying for a visa to enter the UK. They are now delighted to announce that this update has been made – a positive outcome for F&C families and great success for AFF.

Iceland Frozen Foods - List of Current Vacancies North Wales and North West

To see the current list of vacancies at the Head Office, Deeside, and locations throughout the North West, please click HERE
(type Chester into location)

Friday, 23 March 2018

Tickets for Troops - German Bierfest - Sunday 3rd June 2018


Tickets for Troops provides free tickets to members of the Armed Forces for a variety of sporting, musical and cultural events. The service offers serving personnel and those medically discharged from the forces since 2001, the well-deserved opportunity to enjoy an event of their choice with their friends and families.
For further details or to book tickets, please click HERE

Tickets for Troops - This Morning Live - Thursday 17th May 2018


Morning Live
Tickets for Troops provides free tickets to members of the Armed Forces for a variety of sporting, musical and cultural events. The service offers serving personnel and those medically discharged from the forces since 2001, the well-deserved opportunity to enjoy an event of their choice with their friends and families.
To register/login, please click HERE

Zumba Classes - Tuesdays 18:30-19:15 hrs - Community Centre Dale Barracks


Thursday, 22 March 2018

National Insurance credits for partners of armed forces personnel overseas after 6 April 1975


Military spouses urged to check entitlement to valuable pension rights

National Insurance credits for partners of armed forces personnel overseas after 6 April 1975.

How spouses and civil partners of armed forces personnel posted overseas can fill gaps in their National Insurance record.


Read this guidance to find out how to get Class 3 National Insurance credits if:
·         you are or were married to or the civil partner of a member of the armed forces
·         you went with them on an overseas posting after 6 April 1975
·         you reach State Pension age on or after 6 April 2016

Class 3 National Insurance credits can help to fill gaps in your National Insurance record and count towards your State Pension.

Knitters & Stitchers Club - Mondays 1-3pm - Kingsway & Newton Community Hub

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Kingway and Newton Community Hub at Kingsway Shops Chester CH2 2LJ

Wednesday, 21 March 2018

Easy Resttlement Magazine - Spring 2018

Easy Resettlement Magazine informs Service personnel about employment and training options available to Service leavers.

See the Spring 2018 edition of Easy Resettlement here

Housing Matters - Spring 2018 Edition


To view ... CLICK HERE

List of Job Vacancies - British Forces Cyprus - 20th March 2018


To see the latest job vacancies
advertised in Cyprus

Please pop into the HIVE ....
or check
The Community Centre Cyprus Noticeboard

Cheshire Constabulary - Recruitment Vacancies


Part time cleaner at Chester Town Hall - apply by 27 Mar 18
Kennel Person at HQ - apply by 30 Mar 18
Personal Safety Trainer at Force HQ - apply by 30 Mar 18

To see these and other vacancies, please click HERE

Cheshire Police Fraud Warning - HMRC/ iTunes scam

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Cold callers claim to be from the HMRC and threaten arrest or legal action unless they are paid an amount of iTunes vouchers. They often put pressure on the victim by claiming to have their house under surveillance.

HMRC will never ask for payment in this way....See more

Dementia Friendly Coffee Morning - Chester Zoo - Second & Fourth Mondays

In partnership with and delivered by Alzheimer’s Society & supported by Upton Dene Residential and Nursing Home

    Join us on the second and fourth Mondays of every month for a chance to enjoy a cuppa and a chat with someone from Alzheimer’s Society with a view of our rhinos, warthogs and Asian elephants.
    Bembe Coffee Shop is in the Diamond Jubilee Quarter, which is FREE to access. It's right by the main entrance which has plenty of FREE parking too.
    Join us on the second and fourth Mondays of every month for a chance to enjoy a cuppa with a view of our rhinos, warthogs and Asian elephants.
    Further details can be found HERE

    Tuesday, 20 March 2018

    Chester Comedy Festival - 1st-8th July 2018

    From the 1st - 8th July the stars of comedy from across the world will descend on the city of Chester for 8 days of fun and laughter. The CH1 Comedy Festival will be hosted by some of Chester's well-known venues, including Chester Cathedral, The Chester Grosvenor Hotel and Chester Town Hall.
    For further details, or to book tickets
    please click HERE

    Upton Fest - Upton Pavilion - Sunday 27th May 2018 - 12.00pm-8.00pm

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    Army Families Federation (AFF) Survey - The Impact of an Overseas Posting on Army Families


    AFF survey explores the impact of an overseas posting on Army families

    Has your Army family been posted overseas in the last three years? Have you returned to the UK after an overseas posting? The Army Families Federation (AFF) has released a new survey to help them to gain a better understanding of the impact of an overseas posting on Army families.

    Share your experience
    They want to hear about your family life overseas: what works well and where improvement is needed compared to Army life in the UK.

    Their short survey asks families to consider whether they were able to make an informed choice about their posting before accepting it.

    You'll have the opportunity to share your experiences of housing, education, healthcare, employment and welfare support for your posting, and all evidence gathered by the charity will inform their work with MOD and service providers to improve the overseas experience for families now and in the future.

    Monday, 19 March 2018

    Defence Discount Services - Alton Towers Resort - Save upto 49%

    Save up to 49% off tickets at Alton Towers resort.
    T&C apply
    Click HERE for more details

    Alton Towers park reopened on the 17th March 2018

    TV Licence will Change on 1st April 2018




    The cost of a TV Licence will change on 1 April 2018. A colour licence will cost £150.50, an increase of £3.50 on the current fee. A black and white licence will cost £50.50, an increase of £1.

    There will be no change to the free TV Licence for people over 75.

    If you are blind (severely sight impaired), you will still be able to apply for a 50% concession. This means a colour licence costs £75.25, an increase of £1.75.

    For Further Information CLICK HERE

    MOD Childcare Voucher Scheme Deadline Extended


    MOD Childcare Voucher scheme deadline extended

    Following a parliamentary debate on 13 March 2018, Damian Hinds, Education Secretary, announced that the deadline for new participants signing up for childcare vouchers would be extended for six months (until October 2018).

    In September 2017, the UK Government introduced a new Tax-Free Childcare (TFC) scheme to replace all salary sacrifice schemes introduced from 1989.

    The new closure date is now 5 October 2018. We expect that the deadline for new applicants will be the end of August but we will release further details in due course.

    Current members of the Childcare Voucher scheme can remain in the scheme and continue to use Childcare Vouchers for as long as the MOD, as the legal employer, continues to offer the scheme. 

    You can visit www.modchildcare.co.uk (www) for more information about the Childcare Voucher scheme, view the relevant DIN (2017DIN01-092 - Service personnel or 2008DIN01-176 - Civilians) on the Defence Intranet or contact the following for further information about the scheme:

    Service personnel - DBSMilPers-MilOps-CPMT-Mgr@mod.uk 
    Civilians - People - CivHR-RewardMailbox@mod.uk

    The Ultimate Guide - Chester & Cheshire - Spring 2018

    Click HERE to read

    Friday, 16 March 2018

    Cheshire Fire & Rescue Service - Recruitment Vacancies

    To see the current vacancies including:

    Advocate
    Crew Managers
    On call Firefighters

    please click HERE


    Cheshire West & Chester - Bulky Item Collection

    This service is offered to domestic households only.

    How much does it cost?

    • £15 per item
    • A discounted rate of £10 per item is available for those in receipt of a state pension or council tax reduction (excluding single person discount).
    When you make your request online you will be asked to pay online using a credit or debit card. Please note that payments are non-refundable.

    Lego Club - Upton Library - Wednesdays 3.30-4.45

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    An Introduction to Pensions for Serving Personnel



    See the Army Transition Information Sheet on PENSIONS at this link



    Chester Poppy Memorial Walk - 12th May 2018

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    To commemorate the centenary of the ending of World War one, and raise money for the Poppy
    Appeal we’re inviting you and hundreds of others to take part in a sponsored 5 mile walk around the
    historic city of Chester.


    The walk will take in WW1 memorials and important sites. It will be animated by real life 'WW1 Soldiers', you'll be kept busy with a quiz on the way round - and everyone taking part gets a unique goody bag as a souvenir!

    Come on your own, with young or old family members, or gather a team of friends. Even dogs are welcome. Wheelchair & buggy friendly route.


    It will be a grand day out for everyone, and help to remind us all of the sacrifices made by Cheshire people who did not return.

    For further information or to book tickets, 
    please click HERE


    Thursday, 15 March 2018

    Starbucks has jointed forces with Defence Discount Service

    Starbucks gives back to everyday heroes with new discount programme


    Starbucks has joined forces with Defence Discount Service to give back to everyday heroes, by offering a 10% discount off their total bill* from 14 March 2018.

    To sign up to Defence Discount Service, visit: https://www.defencediscountservice.co.uk/  or use its free mobile app for iPhone and Android.

    Storyhouse Chester - Listings


    To see a list of activities and events
    at Storyhouse
    please click

    Rethink Mental Illness - Chester Support Group - Monday Drop in Groups

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    Chester PLUS, 1 The Mount, Boughton, Chester, CH3 5UD.

    Further information can be found HERE

    Career Transition Partnership - Employment Bulletin - March 2018

    To see the latest employment bulletin
    please click HERE

    Football Coaching for Children - 12 Week Football Course - Queens Park High School - Wednesdays

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    Wednesday, 14 March 2018

    Royal Humane Society


    Do you know someone who has put his or her life at risk to save, or attempt to save, another person, or someone who has carried out a successful resuscitation?


    Do you know someone who has saved a life by timely first aid, such as stopping arterial bleeding?


    If so, you should be aware of The Royal Humane Society - a charity that grants awards for acts of bravery in the saving of human life and also for the restoration of life by resuscitation.

    Awards may be granted to those who have put their own lives at risk to save or attempt to save someone else. The awards granted for these acts of bravery include bronze, silver and gold
    medals and testimonials on vellum or parchment.


    Anyone can make a nomination to them and they would like to hear from you (further details can be found at https://www.royalhumanesociety.org.uk/nominate/).

    Safeguarding Children


    As parents – or relatives, teachers and other adults responsible to children’s safety – we want our children and those we look after to be healthy and happy … and to develop well both physically and mentally. Above all, it’s also instinctive that we want kids to be safe.

    Please CLICK HERE to visit the "get safe online" website

    ABF - Photo Competition 2019

    Service Families Hot Topics - March 2018


    See the Mar 18 edition of the Service Families Hot Topics newsletter at this link:

    Tuesday, 13 March 2018

    Veterans' Gateway Newsletter


    See the Veterans' Gateway Newsletter
    at this link:

    Cheshire Constabulary - Recruitment Vacancies for Police Staff


    Police Staff - Temporary HR Assistant
    Police Staff - CSI Team Leader - Forensic Investigation
    Police Staff - Head of Finance, Operations & Governance, Warrington
    Police Staff - IT Developer, IT Service, Winsford
    Police Staff - Mobile Cleaner - Various Locations
    To see a list of all vacancies, including the above
    please click HERE

    Monday, 12 March 2018


    CarillionAmey has produced fact sheets to help customers living in service families accommodation.

    The following factsheets are available on their website. Please use the link below to access them.

    · Problems with your heating?

    · Utility Bill Management – move in

    · Utility Bill Management – move out

    · Furniture Service

    · Vital Safety Inspections

    · Safety in the home

    · Running a business in your Service home

    · Pets in your Service home

    · Protecting your family and Service home in winter

    · Additional Needs Adaptations (move in)

    · Additional Needs Adaptations (living in)

    · Damp and Mould


    Quest Resettlement - March 2018





    Jupiter Hotel / Mecure Chester Abbots Well - Vacancies for Staff


    Mercure Chester Abbots Well require the following staff:

    Food & Beverage Supervisor
    Food & Beverage Attendant
    Receptionist
    Room Attendant

    Further details can be found HERE