Spectra Group Sponsor Solo Atlantic Row

Spectra Group are proud to be sponsoring a former SAS soldier as he embarks on the Row Sentinel Atlantic Challenge – a row of 3,400 miles across the Atlantic with only the sun and stars to guide him.

Spectra Group, the internationally renowned specialist provider of secure voice, data and satellite communications systems are a gold level sponsor of the Row Sentinel Atlantic Challenge.

Ian Rivers, a former SAS soldier from Hereford, is taking on the mammoth challenge without any support or access to GPS. He will leave New York in May and row the 3100 plus nautical miles to the Isles of Scilly. The crossing will test his endurance, navigation and seamanship to the absolute limit, as nobody has ever managed to complete an unsupported solo row of the Atlantic using the Northern Route. He will be rowing for between nine and 12 hours each day and thinks the crossing will take him between 60 and 90 days, using only a sextant and the stars to complete the Atlantic journey. Fierce conditions and facing tropical storms, which are expected every two weeks, make this challenge even more daunting.

The veteran was inspired to take on this epic challenge after using nature as a guide after being kidnapped in Syria in 2013 – he successfully escaped, then navigated his way to safety using natural indicators.

His 27-year military career began in 1984, with the Royal Artillery. A career with 29 Commando followed, before passing SAS selection in 1991 and then finally leaving the military in 2011. Mr Rivers said two decades in the Special Forces took his “fitness levels” and “mental aptitude” to the next level. His time in the Armed Forces fuelled his passion for pure navigation – he became a trained mountain guide and ocean yacht-master, and his achievements already include traversing all the major mountain ranges, deserts and oceans of the world.

Ian Rivers has spent his life seeking adventure. From a childhood he describes as “feral” right through his career in the SAS, he’s always looked for the next challenge. “I wanted to make it a true adventure, going back to how people used to cross oceans 100 years ago,” he said and that “isolation” will rank as one of the toughest factors of the Row Sentinel Challenge. “I don’t particularly like my own company. I prefer the company of other people. So initially, after a week or so, I’ll just get into the equilibrium of being on my own and getting into the routine.” Simon Davies, CEO at Spectra Group commented “We are exceedingly proud to be involved by supporting such a mental and physical challenge that is being completed in support of such good causes. Many of our products are used by Special Forces across the globe, and a number of Spectra employees are ex-military with a specialist background, so we are committed to supporting the services and veterans in any way we can”. He added: “We have provided Ian with a Broadband Global Access Network terminal and satellite airtime which he will use to transmit reports and updates on his progress regularly”.

Ian is raising money for the Special Air Service Regimental Association and St Michael’s Hospice in Hereford.

You can track Ian’s progress here https://rowsentinel.com

Or donate to the cause https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/charity-web/charity/displayCharityCampaignPage.action?charityCampaignUrl=sentinel

Women In Defence: Focus on Taniya Morris

On Monday 12th October, members of the Women in Defence UK community will gather to attend the Women in Defence UK Annual Conference, sponsored by Spectra Group.

As a part of the Women in Defence support initiative, Spectra Group is focussing on Taniya Morris, a member of the extended Spectra Group marketing team. Taniya works for Chamois Consulting, the marketing agency that Spectra Group uses to manage their PR and advertising. As a result, Taniya has worked very closely with the Spectra Group marketing, sales and management teams for nearly three years where her in-depth defence knowledge and experience has helped shape technically and operationally accurate external communications.

Lt Col Taniya Morris, part of the extended Spectra Group marketing team

Taniya joined Chamois in 2019 after a diverse and successful military career, followed by an extended period of independent travel and adventure.  Having served over 20 years in the military as a logistician, staff officer and Army helicopter pilot, including several operational tours, Taniya has an extensive and in-depth knowledge of military operations, requirements and technology.  Her career also included Advanced Staff training, where she obtained Masters Degrees in both Defence Studies and Military Technology.

An accomplished skier, sub-aqua diver and cyclist, Taniya is passionate about life.  On leaving the Army in 2008 she embarked on a 4-year epic circumnavigation of Africa with her husband and their trusty Land Rover, Itchy.  Travelling independently, often though inhospitable and remote regions, she discovered the joy of writing and photography through the production of a blog and a comprehensive website that proved to be an invaluable planning resource for fellow over-land travellers.

Lt Col Taniya Morris, part of the extended Spectra Group marketing team

Now combining work as a Lieutenant Colonel in the Army Reserves with working at Chamois as principal consultant in PR & Media, Taniya is in the enviable position of being able to combine her depth of military operational and technical knowledge with her passion for communication.

Spectra Group is sponsoring the 2020 Women In Defence Annual Conference as part of its ongoing commitment to support the armed forces community.

 

 

Jody Jones Wins Soldiering On Awards Sporting Excellence Award – Sponsored by Spectra Group

We are delighted to announce that Jody Jones has won the Sporting Excellence Award, sponsored by the Spectra Group.

The Sporting Excellence Award honours a person or team that has overcome challenges, inspired others, and demonstrated outstanding achievement in the field of sport. Spectra Group is proud to continue to support the Soldiering On Awards and the fantastic 2020 Finalists. The standard of nominees was again extremely high this year, and to be selected as a finalist is a tremendous achievement of which they should all be incredibly proud. It is the 10th year of these awards, and we are honoured to have been here since the beginning. All the finalists are real role models, not just for the Armed Forces community, but for the country as a whole.

After her diagnosis of stage 4 bowel cancer, the incredible Jody swam the English Channel, raising £11,000 for Blesma, The Limbless Veterans. After 2,000 km of training followed seven surgeries, 21 infusions chemotherapy; Jody swam the 21 miles unaided in 18 hours, 14 minutes and 30 seconds, contending with strong currents, jellyfish and large ships.

Jody Jones wins SOA2020 Sporting Excellence Award sponsored by Spectra Group

Successful businesswoman, Veteran’s wife and mother to two young children, Jody Jones volunteers as the Chair of the North London Military Wives Choir. Jody’s drive and determination encompass everything it takes to be both a great sporting champion and a vital member of the Armed Forces community.

 

Our other finalists were:

Michael Lewis, finalist in the 2020 Soldiering On Awards Sporting Excellence Category, sponsored by Spectra Group

Michael Lewis – after suffering a below knee amputation, Mike was determined to compete in mainstream sports, competing in numerous mud runs, a half marathon, three boxing matches and a car rally. Mike is a community fundraiser for the Royal British Legion.

 

 

James Rose, finalist in the 2020 Soldiering On Awards Sporting Excellence Category, sponsored by Spectra Group

James Rose – Despite losing both legs above the knee and with a history of PTSD and depression, James successfully won medals in the Invictus games, and set the record for becoming the first unaided double amputee to climb Mount Kilimanjaro.

 

 

Lt Colonel Ren Kapur MBE, CEO of X-Forces Enterprise and Co-Chair of the Soldiering On Awards said: “The selfless dedication of our winners is both humbling and inspirational. It is so special to share these moments of celebration, not just with the winners but with all of the finalists.

“We couldn’t do this without the continued support of our sponsors, who have stood by us, and our finalists through challenging and uncertain times. Our growing community is stronger than ever.”

Spectra Group sponsor the 2020 Women in Defence Conference.

On Monday 12th October, members of the Women in Defence UK community will gather to attend the Women in Defence UK Annual Conference. 

As part of Spectra Group’s ongoing commitment to supporting the UK Armed Forces community, it is sponsoring the Conference’s, Development Zone in 2020. One of four zones, the Development Zone will comprise of a series of workshops and masterclasses covering topics ranging from communication to authenticity and bias. In recognition that an innovative approach is needed to deliver an environment where women can be authentically themselves, the unique programmes aim to enable learning with, and from, one another.

Virtual Conference

The event audience is drawn from right across the Defence community, united both by a shared passion for equality and by unique positions as agents of change within the industry. This year, for obvious reasons, the event will take place virtually, offering some exciting opportunities for greater participation and added features.

This year, the Annual Conference will include a keynote speaker, a panel and a virtual introductory energiser session to get the day off to a harmonious start. Also included are masterclasses, interviews and discussions that will challenge, develop and inspire the audience.

Women In Defence Awards

Also included in the Conference is the Women In Defence Awards Shortlisting Event. In a celebration of women who work across the UK defence sector, 64 individuals and teams will be shortlisted from the 500 nominations.

This year’s Women in Defence UK promises to be an inspirational and unforgettable event, and Spectra Group is looking forward to meeting you there, and in the virtual exhibition zone. Sign-up using this link.

 

Spectra Group awarded Gold by the UK Defence Employer Recognition Scheme

Spectra Group is proud and delighted to announce that they have been awarded Gold for their work to support the UK’s armed forces community. This is the highest award offered by the Defence Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS).  The ERS encourages employers to support defence and inspire others to do the same. Recipients of awards have been recognised as organisations that have pledged, demonstrated or advocated support to defence and the wider armed forces community, and have aligned their values with the Armed Forces Covenant (AFC).

The Gold award is based on Spectra Group having met certain criteria that show what has been done to support the armed forces community, including:

  • Proactively promoting the wider armed forces community, Armed Forces Day and Reserves Day.
  • Implementing human resources policies to support Reservists, Veterans, service leavers, the wounded, injured or sick and military spouses/partners.
  • Proactively promote, encourage and support other organisations to sign the AFC and to progress through ERS.
  • Working, supporting and leading on projects to support Armed Forces Veterans and Defence charities.

Simon Davies, CEO, said: “We are absolutely delighted and honoured to have been recognised for the Gold Award as part of the Defence Employer Recognition Scheme. It follows years of dedication from our team who continue to work with and support our armed forces community here in Hereford and across the wider UK and beyond. There are plenty more projects yet to come, and we’re excited to display the Gold Standard logo and to carry on working hard to support the UK Armed Forces Community”.

More information on the scheme can be found on the Defence Employer Recognition Scheme website.