Richard Lochhead

Moray SNP News



Moray MP Angus Robertson has commented on speculation in the press that the Ministry of Defence may be considering the possible reopening of RAF Kinloss or RAF Leuchars as a home for Maritime Patrol Aircraft (MPA).

Angus Robertson MP said:

"We require Maritime Patrol Aircraft as a priority, which should be stationed in Scotland, given the geographic proximity to their tasks. Kinloss Base has been home to MPA for decades and could easily operate the joint air force and army facility.

"The decision to end the Nimrod replacement project and close Kinloss as an RAF Base was met with widespread criticism from both the public in Moray and by defence experts.

"The UK is the only northern European nation with armed forces without Maritime Patrol Aircraft. This is totally ludicrous, not least because of the ongoing security situation in the world and concerns over submarine incursions into our waters.

"In Moray there was great sadness when Kinloss closed, as a strong bond had been built between the RAF and the local community over many years. It will be entirely unsurprising if the MoD is having to look at re-opening Kinloss or, indeed, Leuchars as an airbase to deal with this issue.

"We have welcomed the Royal Engineers to Kinloss since the end of RAF activities there but there is, frankly, loads of space and a long runway, which could easily accommodate both 39 Engineers and a new MPA fleet as well."