MOD has announced a £121 million contract for the first stage of work on a Defence College of Technical Training at Lyneham in Wiltshire.
The contract will mean technical training for all 3 services will be brought together at a central location.
The development will provide new single living accommodation, purpose-built teaching facilities, a large outdoor training area and a publicly-accessible museum for the Army’s Corps of Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers.
Lyneham’s history of repatriations will be preserved and honoured with a memorial dedication, an area of the museum, and a Garden of Remembrance.
Much of the redevelopment will consist of upgrading and refurbishing existing buildings. Outdoor training will take place on the former airfield. Once completed, there will be approximately 2,000 military and civilian personnel based at Lyneham.
The Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO), which manages and maintains land and property for MOD, has awarded the contract to Hercules – a consortium made up of Kier and Balfour Beatty.
Defence Minister Dr Andrew Murrison said:
The new Defence College of Technical Training will be a state-of-the-art facility which will modernise training for the Armed Forces, making it more flexible and better able to respond to changes in equipment and learning technologies.
The memorial dedication, publicly-accessible museum and memorial garden will be important elements of the development.
The first phase of the development is scheduled to start early next year, and will be completed by the autumn of 2015, when the first staff and students will arrive at the college.
It is planned that there will be further tranches of work as other technical training establishments relocate to Lyneham.
DIO project leader David Holmes said:
DIO is pleased to award this contract, which is an important milestone in the development of the new Defence College of Technical Training.
This state-of-the-art tri-service facility will help us to support the Armed Forces by achieving our aim of providing the best possible training facilities as they prepare for operations.
The investment is the latest to be announced on improved accommodation and technical facilities for the Armed Forces.
In March, Defence Secretary Philip Hammond announced that MOD would be investing £1.8 billion in the new basing plan for the Army, and £1 billion of this will be spent on building brand new accommodation.
This will see around 1,900 new family homes being built and more than 7,800 new rooms for single soldiers, along with over 800 upgraded rooms for single soldiers and over 450 upgraded homes for families. The rest of the investment will be spent on technical infrastructure.