After researching into how we can further support our local community we came across this little gem of a scheme run by the Ministry of Defence, the ‘Armed Forces Covenant’. We all unanimously agreed that this would be a fantastic scheme to follow and we are proud to announce that we have pledged our support to the armed forces community by signing the Armed Forces Covenant.
We have organised many funerals for fallen servicemen in the past, contacting personnel from their regiment to attend with Regiment colours, helping to track relatives through our extensive files that go back 114 years and organising a standard from the Royal British Legion. We would love for our local community to know that we can help you, even if its in a small way, through our pledge to the Armed Services and their families.
Leonard Whittle, grandfather to Richard, the current Managing Director of Bungards, started working for the company in 1939 a few months before the Second World War broke out, and managed to volunteer even though being a Funeral Director he worked in a ‘reserved occupation’ (this meant that your job was classed important enough to a country that those serving in such occupations were exempt, in fact forbidden, from military service) Leonard wasn’t going to be put off by this small problem and aged 24, and just one year after joining his father-in-law in the family business he was desperate to ‘do his bit’ and he went off to serve as a Corporal for the Royal Artillery manning Anti-Aircraft Guns in Malta during the Second World War.
At Bungards our team have a lot of family history to reflect back upon and some fantastic stories of intense resolve passed down through the generations, from Zoe’s Great-Uncle Jhonny, a firefighter in London, being held by his feet dangling across the dome of St Pauls Cathedral in London batting off incendiary devices as they rained down during the blitz, to Rays father being called out many many times as part of the ambulance service to tend to the maimed during the ‘Brighton Blitz’ when the Luftwaffe bombed Brighton on over 56 occasions. And Ben’s grandfather who fought courageously and went on to become a Major in the Royal Anglian Regiment formed after the war ended.
Hitler was reported to have wanted the Royal Pavilion to be his headquarters after the war ended and insisted the site was not to be bombed, it came scarily close to being destroyed on the 29th November 1940 when a bomb landed between the Pavilion and the Dome but the ground, softened by intense rain, cushioned the impact and the shock-waves were absorbed below ground level saving the two historic buildings from certain ruin. 198 residents from Brighton & Hove lost their lives in World War 2 and 790 were injured during the Brighton Blitz
After reflecting back upon our own families struggles, the part Brighton & Hove played during the war effort, and us having family and friends who are currently in the forces it didn’t take us long to come to the conclusion that now we know about this, we will actively seek to help our servicemen and women in whichever way we can as a business and therefore we will seek to uphold the principles of the Armed Forces Covenant, by:
- Promoting the fact that we are an armed forces-friendly organisation;
- Seeking to support our employees who choose to be members of the Reserve forces, including by accommodating their training and deployment where possible;
- Offering support to our local cadet units, either in our local community or in local schools, where possible;
- Aiming to actively participate in Armed Forces Day;
- Offering a discount to members of the Armed Forces Community;
If you yourself, or if you have family members who have been in the Armed Forces please come and talk to us about how we may be able to help you at your time of need. We are proud to be able to be a part of these principles and we would be proud for this time round, to let US Serve YOU.