Leuchars army move concerns

TS EN 18/07/2011. LEUCHARS, FIFE: The front gate of RAF Leuchars air base in Fife. The UK Coalition Government has announced the withdrawal of the RAF from Leuchars as part of cuts in defence spending.
TS EN 18/07/2011. LEUCHARS, FIFE: The front gate of RAF Leuchars air base in Fife. The UK Coalition Government has announced the withdrawal of the RAF from Leuchars as part of cuts in defence spending.
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A GROUP of MPs have delivered a scathing verdict on the recent defence review in which it was announced RAF Leuchars will be turned into an army base.

The House of Commons Defence Select Committee said it was not convinced the UK’s armed forces would be able to carry out their tasks after 2015, given the current financial climate and the ‘drawdown of capabilities’ resulting from the review.

With regard to the decision to house troops returning from Germany at Leuchars, the committee raised concerns that the plans were not further advanced — and the MPs urged the Ministry of Defence (MoD) to come clean with the local community over its plans.

The report said: “We are conscious of the uncertainty that the basing review has created for service personnel, their families, local communities and businesses.

“We will monitor the outcomes of the review.

“We call on the Government to outline its proposals to assist the service personnel, families and communities affected at an early stage in line with the obligations outlined in the armed forces covenant.”

It went on: “We note the MoD’s update on July 18, 2011, of the plans for the withdrawal of UK forces from Germany.

“However, given that half of UK forces are due to return by 2015, we are concerned that the plans are not further advanced.

“The MoD should provide us with a full implementation plan, its funding and method of attaining the stated goals, at the earliest opportunity and deliver clear communication of these plans for service personnel, their families, local communities and businesses.

“The elements of the strategic defence and security review are interlinked and failure in one area may mean failure elsewhere.”