RAF Valley Flight Training Investment Boost
by Jeff Williams
The RAF Valley Training Centre on Anglesey, the busiest live training location in the UK, will invest 20 million GB pounds in a new extension with a 12,000 sq. metre hangar and state-of-the-art training centre.
This contract which starts in January 2009 and is due to complete by spring 2010 comes under the UK Military Flying Training System programme, which is under the wing of VT Support Services.
This stage is part of a 25 year private finance scheme worth over 600 million GB pounds run by the Ascent, a joint venture between Lockhead martin and VT Group, to strengthen flight training capacity at RAF Valley.
Ascent Deputy Director Ken Cornfield sees this latest project at RAF Valley as part of the overall objective of significantly enhancing fast jet training capability.
As well as the new hangar which will contain the latest high-tech fighter planes, the new training suite will contain a gym and training rooms as well as IT facilities.
This is an important investment both for maintaining the high standards of RAF flight personnel in an important area of UK defence, but also in terms of the spin-offs for the local island economy.
With the impact of the global economic recession hitting the island like so many other regions, with the recent announcements from Eatons, Woolworths and Anglesey Aluminium Metal, this investment will help to redress some of these local setbacks.
The construction work, to be carried out by Liverpool based Morgan Ashurst, involves some hurdles in relation to the local environment, personnel security and the high level of aircraft activity.
All employees of Morgan Ashurst ans well as any contractors it uses must go through rigorous security checks and equipment, plant and any supplies deliverred to the site will be inspected by armed military personnel.
Given that the site is located within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB)
the construction team have to ensure nets are put in place to prevent lizards, snakes and worms from entering the location.
Recently 203 Squardon announced that Prince William will train with the Search and Rescue Training Unit
at RAF Valley in the Summer of this year.
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