Posted on: Wednesday 3 March 2021
At a virtual ceremony held on Thursday 18 February, her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant of Gwent, Brigadier Robert Aitken CBE paid tribute to the work of all of the Armed Forces who are currently supporting civil powers during the coronavirus crisis.
The Lord-Lieutenant also praised reservists for ‘stepping up’ when needed and doing a fantastic job during the pandemic
Torfaen Council employee and reservist, Sapper Gavin Bradbury of the Royal Monmouthshire Royal Engineers, was one of those recognised for an award.
Gavin, from Cwmbran, works as a plant operator for the council. Along with three other reservists, he received recognition for his outstanding service and devotion to duty and was awarded with the Lord-Lieutenant’s Certificate of Merit.
As a plant operator for the council, Gavin maintains the existing fabric of the highway, carrying out patching and kerbing works to ensure the highway is kept safe for motorists and pedestrians alike. He also responds to out of hours emergencies as Instructed by the councils duty officers, and is a vital cog in the councils winter maintenance service.
Gavin enlisted in the army reserve in 2005, when he joined the Royal Monmouthshire Royal Engineer Militia. Gavin has been known and respected by his peers and seniors throughout the regiment, for his experience and diligence as a plant operator.
Early this year when the floods affected Monmouth, Sapper Bradbury was supported by Torfaen Council to take time off work to form part of a small team to clear up flood damaged fields.
With his wider experience in motor transport, Gavin has also conducted a number of self-loading dump truck training sessions to enable deployment in the field during Operation Shader.
Speaking at his first ever virtual award ceremony Brigadier Aitken also praised the work of the Cadet Forces saying they provided an opportunity for teenagers to take risks in a safe and secure environment.
“We have got here in Gwent and throughout the whole of Wales regular members of the Royal Navy, of the Army and the Royal Air Force serving in testing centres and vaccination centres and doing a huge amount to raise the reputation of the armed forces for quiet efficiency behind the scenes,” said Brigadier Aitken.
“And of course our reservists have played a part in that as well. We have reservists working in ops rooms, driving ambulances, deep cleaning ambulances as well as helping in vaccination centres and testing centres. You are doing a fantastic job by stepping up to the plate when you are most needed.”
The virtual awards event was organised and broadcast by the Reserve Forces’ and Cadets’ Association (RFCA) for Wales – an organisation that has supported the Armed Forces for over 100 years. To learn more visit www.Wales-RFCA.org
Torfaen's Armed Forces Champion, Cllr Alan Jones, said: "I would like to congratulate Gavin on receiving the Lord-Lieutenant’s Certificate of Merit, a well-deserved achievement having given 15 years of continuous service as an army reservist. Well done!
“As a council we will continue to support our employees and their families as part of our Armed Forces Community Covenant."
Since the establishment of Torfaen's Armed Forces Community Covenant, the council has been able to support many members of the armed forces community, both past and present and in 2020 was named winners of the Employer Recognition Scheme Gold Awards for demonstrating outstanding support for the armed forces community.
In order to win the award, the council had to demonstrate they have supportive HR policies in place for Veterans, Reserves, Cadet Force Adult Volunteers and Spouses and Partners of those serving in the Armed Forces.
Each year Torfaen Council reservists are given an extra 10 days paid leave to help them to meet their commitments to the reserve forces and support reservists who may be called out for military operations.
For more information about how the council supports members of the armed forces community through the Community Covenant, visit: https://www.torfaen.gov.uk/en/AboutTheCouncil/Armed-Forces-Community-Covenant/ArmedForcesCommunityCovenant.aspx