07 Jun 06. Headquarters (HQ): Reductions. The Armed Forces’ Minister confirmed (7 Jun 06) that the RN’s new integrated HQ had become operational on 1 Apr 06. Collocation of the RAF’s Strike HQ and Personnel and Training HQ was progressing well, with the main elements expected to be operational in October 2006 at RAF High Wycombe. For the Army, HQ Land and HQ Adjutant General were to create an integrated HQ at a single site by March 2009. DLO News (June 2006) reported that a ‘business case’ was being made for DLO/DPA Collocation (Defence Logistics Organisation/Defence Procurement Agency). A Ministerial decision on collocation is expected “in the next few weeks”.
Comments: On 21 Dec 05 the DLO announced that the MoD had acquired the Bank of Ireland site adjacent to the DPA at Abbey Wood, Bristol. The site is “capable of supporting 350 desks with the potential to develop up to 1,150 more”. Ministerial approval for DLO/DPA collocation would appear to be a formality. Separating the organisations, as inspired by managements consultants, has been an expensive error. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 0624, 19 Jun 06)
Jun 06. The Old War Office: Disposal? DLO News (June 2006) notes that “detailed proposals are being developed to reduce the number of MoD Headquarters buildings in London from three to two”. Staff could be accommodated in the refurbished Main Building and in St George’s Court, “allowing withdrawal from the Old War Office building”. A report is due to be forwarded to Ministers “early next year”.
Comment: Written Answers in March 2004 revealed that the Old War Office was held as a freehold property with a 2001 ‘realisable value’ of £63.37m. A history of the building was published by the MoD in July 2001, in which the then Defence Secretary described “its imposing Edwardian Baroque exterior and splendidly restored rooms and stairways”. It appears that the Chancellor has designs on a further part of the MoD’s ‘family silver’. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 0624, 19 Jun 06)
14 Jun 06. HMS CLYDE: ‘Floated Out’. VT Shipbuilding explained the technology involved in HMS CLYDE’s ‘floating out’ (a modern method of launching), which took place in Portsmouth on 14/15 Jun 06. The ship is due to be named in September and handed over in October 2006, before starting operations in the South Atlantic in June 2007.
Comment: HMS CLYDE is an 80 metre Offshore Patrol Vessel (Helicopter) (OPV(H)) which is to replace the two existing Castle Class OPV in carrying out the role of Falkland Islands Patrol Vessel. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 0624, 19 Jun 06)
16 Jun 06. USS Gerald Ford?. The first ship of the U.S. Navy’s newest class of aircraft carrier is likely to carry the name of the nation’s 38th president, if a measure passed June 16 by the U.S. Senate becomes law. (Source: Defense News)
17 Jun 06. The Del Rio City Council has put plans for an unmanned aerial vehicle training facility on hold. Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) Group, Incorporated made a proposal to city council under the name of King’s Eye, Incorporated, Tuesday that would base the company’s headquarters and operations in Del Rio. Council members unanimously voted to put those plans on hold when they tabled the sublease agreement pertaining to two Del Rio International Airport hangars needed to house the operation. (Source: Del Rio News Herald)
Jun 06.RAF St Athan: Renamed. RAF St Athan will cease to exist on 1 Jul 06, when the base is renamed MoD St Athan.
Comment: Approximately 150 buildings and 1,000 acres (405 hectares) of the former RAF Station are now owned by the Welsh Assembly. West Camp at St Athan is now occupied by the Special Forces Support Group while East Camp contains an RAF contingent including No 4 School of Technical Training. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 0624, 19 Jun 06)
MILITARY AND GOVERNMENT
17 Jun 06. Palacio to take World Bank post. Paul Wolfowitz, the president o