Richard Lochhead

Moray SNP News



Moray’s MP Angus Robertson and MSP Richard Lochhead have responded to today’s statement by the Secretary of State for Defence on future basing arrangements. In the statement the Secretary of State has stated that Kinloss Barracks will be retained.

Angus Robertson MP said:

“The statement on base closures shows why we were right to be concerned in Scotland with the closure of 8 defence sites announced by the Conservative Government. The fact that the Minister felt the need to specifically mention Kinloss shows that our joint efforts in Moray hit home, forcing the Government to specifically exclude Kinloss from their base closure plans. Nearby Fort George does not fare so well with a long slow decline now in prospect.

“The response to the potential threat to Kinloss by Moray Council, HIE, the Scottish Government and others, alongside Richard Lochhead MSP and myself shows how Moray can pull together when economic risks are identified and have a united front in the face of potential threats.

“It is obvious from both previous defence reviews and from the current process that we need to stay on our toes. Promises of consultation by the Ministry of Defence were reneged on and that caused us significant concern. Hopefully the UK Government will learn lessons from this process and the criticisms they have received but I am not holding my breath.”

Richard Lochhead MSP said:

"This is good news and a huge relief for the local community and Moray economy. After losing RAF Kinloss a few years ago in awful circumstances, basing an army regiment at Kinloss was announced to make part up for part of the big hole left in the economy and Moray's MoD footprint.

"There is absolutely no doubt that there was a big question mark hanging over the future of the barracks throughout the MoD's review and that's why the cross-party and multi-agency Moray Economic Partnership deserves credit for the successful campaign to save the army presence.

"Our thoughts in Moray however are with colleagues along the coast at Fort George who now face a more difficult future as a result of decisions taken hundreds of miles away in London."

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