A DORSET law firm has signed the Armed Forces Covenant to show its support for military personnel and veterans.

Ellis Jones Solicitors managing partner Nigel Smith put pen to paper with Lieutenant Colonel Anthony Sharman of the British Army based at Bovington.

It has registered its covenant with the Wessex Reserve Forces & Cadets Association and has received the government’s Bronze Defence Employer Recognition Scheme Award to mark its commitment.

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The Armed Forces Covenant paves the way for Ellis Jones to employ more former military personnel and reservists, and step up its support for the wider ‘forces family’.

The law firm already counts reservists and former military personnel among its 170 staff and 21 partners, including associate solicitor Will Dooley and solicitor Conor Maher.

Managing partner Nigel Smith said: “We are proud to have longstanding links with the armed forces, including private clients and members of our staff.

“Signing the covenant was a natural progression and a way of formally recognising this relationship while allowing us to provide greater support for serving and former armed forces personnel.

“People with a military background bring a valuable skillset for the workplace, including commitment, drive, focus, resilience and leadership qualities.

“We look forward to developing a strong and mutually beneficially relationship.”

The Armed Forces Covenant supports serving personnel, service leavers, veterans, and their families with a range of services and initiatives to ensure they are treated fairly. It has been backed by local and national government, businesses, charities and communities.

Lt Col Sharman said: “We have a national responsibility to ensure that those in the armed forces, and their families, are well-supported, both during and after their service.

“It was a privilege to welcome Ellis Jones Solicitors to the Armed Forces Covenant and we’d like to thank them very much for their pledge.”

Associate Solicitor Will Dooley is a flight lieutenant and commissioned officer within the RAF Air Cadets.

Solicitor Conor Maher was commissioned as an officer in the Army Cadet Force in 2018 and is currently an area staff officer with Devon Army Cadet Force in the rank of lieutenant.