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Armed Forces Covenant Public Signing at SDSC-UK 2023

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What is the Armed Forces Covenant?

Cold weather Rigid Inflatable Boat soldier attack camouflageThe Armed Forces Covenant (AFC) is a promise by the nation ensuring that those who serve or who have served in the armed forces, and their families, are treated fairly.

It is a pledge that, together, we acknowledge and understand that those who serve and their families should be treated with fairness and respect in the communities, the economy and the society they serve with their lives.

The covenant focuses on helping members of the armed forces community to have the same access to government and commercial services and products as any other citizen and, in certain circumstances, priority or discount access to commercial products and services, in order to recognise the commitment that members of the Armed Forces have made to our country.

More information regarding the Armed Forces Covenant can be found at 

How is SDSC-UK involved with the Armed Forces Covenant?

As the UK's largest defence and security event and exhibition aimed at Suppliers of products and services to the Specialist User community, the Specialist Defence & Security Convention UK (SDSC-UK) recognises the importance of supporting our forces.

With all exhibitors operating in the Defence and Security sector and perhaps, most importantly, with the majority of the businesses exhibiting at SDSC-UK having been established by former Armed Forces Personnel or employing members of the Armed Forces Community, SDSC-UK is keen to promote the signing of the covenant.

At 3CDSE 2019, 3CDS (Trading) Limited, the Company responsible for SDSC-UK, signed the Armed Forces Covenant as part of the Expo.  We were joined by the Three Counties Regional Defence and Security Cluster (3CRDSC - formerly 3CDSG)  - the dedicated Defence and Security Group that initiated SDSC-UK - as well as members of 3CRDSC.

In addition to the above, having signed the covenant for the first time in November 2014, Harrison Clark Rickerbys, the law firm that initiated 3CDSE/SDSC-UK, renewed its commitment to the Armed Forces Community by re-signing the covenant and extending the pledges it made previously, in order to ensure that the support it offers to the Armed Forces Community is strengthened even further.

We are delighted that in 2019 Harrison Clark Rickerbys was also awarded the Gold Award for the Armed Forces' Employers Recognition Scheme, which recognises the lengths to which the firm has promoted the AFC and supported ex-forces personnel and their families as well as the wider defence and security industry.

In 2020, 3CDS (Trading) Ltd and 3CDS Ltd (the Company responsible for 3CRDSC) were awarded the Silver Award under the AFC Employer Recognition Scheme.

How you can get involved!

The Armed Forces Covenant – Public signing Opportunity at SDSC-UK 2023 

The MOD guideline is to increase the number of business signatories to the Armed Forces Covenant (AFC) by 10% each year. In addition to signing the Armed Forces Covenant itself, SDSC-UK aims to support this by encouraging other exhibitors at SDSC-UK to show their support and join us by signing the AFC on our Exhibition Day.

If you would like to join us by signing the Armed Forces Covenant at the Expo in 2023, as part of which you will benefit from the attendant publicity, please download below. 

Please complete and return this to Rebecca Kirk no later than 20 October 2023, so that the pledges can be registered with the Reserve Forces and Cadets Association (RFCA) and the Employer Engagement Team in advance of the Expo.

When sending your pledge to Rebecca, please also include full details of who at the Company you wish to nominate as Armed Forces Champion, together with their contact details and details of the person who will be attending the Expo in order to sign the Covenant.  Please also include a full colour, high resolution PNG file of your logo, and either a 60 second video (preferably a MP4 file) or a single PowerPoint slide to provide a brief summary of your Company and why you are choosing to sign the Covenant.

In order to assist, we have included a draft pledge for you to complete. We would encourage you to ensure that your pledge is bespoke to your organisation to ensure that the support you offer to the Armed Forces Community is as strong as possible.


Alternatively, if you do not wish to join the public signing day but still wish to sign the covenant, you can submit your pledge directly to the RFCA Team using the following link:

If you have any questions regarding the Covenant, the pledge you might make or the public signing day, please do not hesitate to contact Rebecca Kirk at




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Please note: SDSC-UK and its trading company 3CDS (Trading) Ltd do not sell or pass on any SDSC-UK contact details to third parties other than those that are expressly authorised to have access to that data for the proper functioning of their roles.

We work with Cyber Quarter, the Midlands Centre for Cyber Security/Univ of Wolverhampton, to ensure that our systems are safe, secure and robust. We are pleased to be rated in the top 10% of organisations for cyber security in the Aerospace and Defence & Security Industry. 

On occasion we are made aware of unscrupulous external actors who claim to hold data from exhibitions such as SDSC-UK. Please be advised that any person offering such data and purporting to be acting on behalf SDSC-UK is fraudulent. Any such perpetrators will be pursued by our sister company, Harrison Clark Rickerbys (hcr), a Top 100 law firm.

Our Security and IT experts advise that it is best not to respond to such emails as by doing so, you may be unwittingly verifying your own email address. If you have any concerns in this regard, please contact Anna Roby-Welford, Director, SDSC-UK