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This publication is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/northwood-headquarters/northwood-headquarters
The site was rebuilt between 2006 to 2011, resulting in a purpose-built HQ site for 2000 personnel. Northwood HQ is commanded by an OF5 who is responsible for providing all support services and for overseeing delivery of the PFI (Private Finance Initiative) Contract with Carillion PLC.
Below you can find about the organisations curently housed at Northwood. You can also find information for visitors to the Northwood Headquarters and for those who may be posted or start to work here.
Organisations at Northwood HQ
Northwood is the UK’s principal military headquarters site is home to 5 operational HQs. The Joint Forces Command HQ, including Permanent Joint Headquarters and the Joint Forces HQ, the Commander Naval Forces North and Headquarters of Commander in Chief Fleet.
Below you can find information about other organsations at the site.
Multinational Headquarters (MNHQ)
To meet the Chief of Defence Staff’s directive to provide the core of an Operational HQ (OHQ) and the core of a Force HQ (FHQ) for European Union-led military Crisis Management Operations (CMOs), a MNHQ facility has been developed at Northwood.
The facility is located in Bldg 410, in the same building as PJHQ, and part of it has already been activated to provide an OHQ for command of the EU-led Counter-Piracy operation (Op ATALANTA). The whole facility provides essential infrastructure for a multinational staff based around a PJHQ Nucleus and is provided with a direct secure communications link into Brussels.
ISS Representative Organisation
“To understand the customer and enable ISS to deliver to defence priorities.”
What we do
The IRO is critical to establishing a more effective and coherent route into information services and systems (ISS) with the important component being the new, single ISS representative, whose main task is to establish a strong working relationship with ISS’s customers and reaching back into ISS on their behalf. The IRO is comprised of 5 regions operating throughout the UK and overseas. IRO region 5 is responsible for Northwood and overseas sites with the HQ element and local ISS representative operating from the Northwood site.
Our responsibilities at Northwood
We are the ISS customer facing component covering all customers at site level.
The IRO provides consistent and coherent front door services to ISS customers, through a series of customer facing processes and procedures. The commitment of ISS to these processes is set out our customer charter.
The successful delivery of these front door services is dependant upon effective and close working relationships with ISS’s delivery teams and other business units supporting the activities necessary to meet customers’ needs and to inform and manage their expectations.
Alongside the Defence CIS single point of contact (owning the relationship between ISS and its end users) and the programmes group (owning the relationship with the sponsor), the IRO owns the relationship between ISS and its customers.
ISS Internal Service Provider (ISP)
“To deliver operational support providing the right services at the right time.”
We are the in-house delivery arm of Information Systems and Services (ISS). The primary focus of ISP is to provide support to military operations worldwide, involving the delivery and assurance of integrated information services to the front line and the business components of the department.
ISP contributes to the delivery of customer focussed Information Services to users worldwide. These services are provided on behalf of ISS delivery teams who are the primary customers of ISP. The outputs of ISP include:
- direct support to operations, e.g. the design, build, installation, commissioning and complex project management of bespoke military comms systems in Afghanistan and the Middle East
- indirect support to operations, e.g. comms aspects support to strategic and tactical ISTAR systems such as Reaper which support live operations
- support to CPM, e.g. project management of the Information & Communication Services (ICS) aspects of particularly complex major MOD accommodation/relocation projects, such as the streamlining accommodation project and PRIDE (Programme to Rationalise and Integrate DIS estate)
- the provision of high grade messaging services, including transmission of operational orders and notification of casualties
- support to urgent operational requirement (UOR) and urgent operational tasking (UOT) e.g. by working with the UOR/UOT centre of ISS to ensure Eng Ops/DSG/SAI and other elements of the ISP deliver the best support
- provision of Site Coordinating Installation Design Authority (SCIDA), providing configuration control of site infrastructure
- deployed System Support, e.g. support to Joint Operation Command System (JOCS), from PJHQ to operational theatres
- maintaining an enterprise view of all networked hardware/software CIS elements and CIS gateways through the exploiting the baseline (EtB) capability
- support to legacy IT, provision of unified IT hardware and audio-visual maintenance service through single source maintenance contract (SSM)
- Head of Establishment services, management of St. Vincent facility
The Northwood Headquarters site has a strict Control of Entry (CoE) policy, which all personnel including visitors and contractors are to adhere to. The Commanding Officer is responsible for access control for the site; this responsibility is delegated to the Base Security Officer (BSyO), who exercises this control through the MOD Guard Service (MGS) and the Military Provost Guard Service (MPGS) personnel on duty.
To enter the establishment, all personnel must be in possession of a valid pass. Passes must be arranged by the sponsor of your visit or posting to Northwood HQ.
Use of vehicles
All vehicles entering the establishment must have a valid pass. Service personnel and MOD employees can obtain a pass from the Pass Office in building 450B.
Visitors must sign for a temporary vehicle pass from the Visitors’ Centre. The relevant vehicle pass must be displayed at all times whilst in the base but must not be visible when outside the site.
Restriction on the number of vehicles allowed to park inside the site are imposed because of the shortage of parking spaces.
At any time whilst entering, leaving or on the establishment you may be required to allow the MGS to search your baggage or vehicle. If you have any objection to this request, you should ask for the BSyO or the Duty Officer of the day.
The taking of unauthorized photographs is strictly prohibited within the confines of the site.
How to find us
Directions to assist in arranging your journey to the Northwood HQ whether by train, bus, coach, air, bike or car.
The nearest bus stops are no more than 200 yards outside the main entrance of Northwood HQ on Sandy Lane.
These bus stops are on the Arriva Shires Route 8 that links Leavesden and Abbots Langley via Watford, South Oxhey and Northwood. The Route operates at approximately 30-40 minute intervals.
For the full route information please refer to the Arriva website.
For Arriva timetable enquiries telephone: 0871 200 22 33
Northwood Underground Station is on the Watford section of the Metropolitan Line. Trains between Aldgate, King’s Cross, Baker Street and Northwood run 4 times an hour and more frequently during peak times.
There is a shuttle bus service available to/from Moor Park Station, one stop further west from Northwood. Moor Park is served by faster trains from central London. Telephone the Northwood HQ Helpdesk on ext 57000 for details regarding the use and timing of the Moor Park Shuttle.
First trains into London leave Northwood at approximately 5:50am (7:30am Sundays); last trains to Northwood leave Baker Street at approx 11:59pm (11:45pm Sundays).
For further information including live service updates and a journey planner, visit the Transport for London (TfL) website.
For Underground enquiries telephone: 020 7222 1234.
Carpenders Park, the nearest National Rail (London Overground) station to Northwood (1 mile approx), is on the Euston to Watford line. With trains every 20 minutes, journeys take approximately 35 minutes.
Bushey National Rail (London Overground) station (3 miles), is also on the Euston to Watford line. With fast trains every 30 minutes, journeys take 15 to 20 minutes.
Watford Junction, the nearest mainline National Rail station (4.5 miles) is on the London and North Western Line. With trains every 15 minutes, journeys take 20 minutes.
Further information including a journey planner, ticket purchasing and service updates can be found on the National Rail website.
For all National Rail enquiries telephone: 08457 48 49 50.
From M25: Junction 16. Exit onto M40 East signposted London(W). Take first exit A412/A413. At bottom of slip road (traffic light controlled) turn left and at mini roundabout take first exit (effectively straight on).
Take right hand lane when approaching traffic lights (less than 1/4 mile). Turn right onto A412 signposted Denham and Watford. After 1/2 mile and just after passing under railway bridge turn right into Moorfield Road (signposted Harefield). Follow over canal to mini roundabout at T-junction.
Turn left towards Harefield (Harvil Road). Follow to crossroads in centre of Harefield. Turn right (Breakspear Road signposted Northwood). After 200 yds turn left into Northwood road (signposted Northwood). Follow for two miles to T-junction. Turn right and shortly first left signposted Northwood Headquarters (white sign with red surround). Follow Batchworth Lane for some two miles until it ends at a T-junction.
Turn right and Northwood Headquarters are approximately 400 yards on the right. From M1: Southbound exit J5 (M1), off ramp, Traffic light with roundabout. 3rd exit towards Watford/Bushey, or similarly Northwood from London, but 2nd exit.
Approx half mile roundabout (with single lane bypass (keep in left lane), either bypass or straight across. Approx half-mile roundabout, keep left and take filter left before roundabout. Quarter mile roundabout straight across (large supermarket on right). Traffic lights at T-junction. Keep in left lane (All traffic turns left) Turn left with traffic and stay in left lane (Road forks). Traffic lights at fork, stay left (straight on, single lane). Once road goes back to 2 lanes (Approx 100 Meters), move to right lane. Roundabout: Follow around to the right and take 2nd exit (You will see signs (White with red border) for Northwood HQ). You are now on the road direct to the HQ. 2 Sets of lights then approx 2 miles. The HQ Complex is at the crest of a long hill on the right hand side of the road.
Heathrow Airport is approximately 35 minutes’ drive from Northwood.
For flight enquiries:
- Heathrow airport: 0870 0000123
- Gatwick airport: 0870 0002468
- Luton airport: 01582 405100
- Stanstead airport: 0870 0000303
Unit Personnel Office (UPO)
Situated on the first floor of Mercury Building (Building 110) the UPO is a tri-service organization equipped to deal with all pay, leave, and personnel documentation matters.
All service personnel are to report to the UPO at 8:30am on the day of arrival at the Northwood Headquarters site. The UPO is open for business from:
|Monday to Thursday||8:30am to 12:30pm and 1:15 pm to 5:00pm|
|Friday||8:30am to 12:30pm and 1:15pm to 3:00pm|
The Single Service Desks (UPO)
These desks can provide guidance/advice on all single service matters as well as tri-service matters relating to the Northwood Headquarters site, including such things as:
- female personnel advisers
- duty travel
- stores support
- duty rosters
- welfare funds
Royal Navy Supervisor: Ext 57806 Army Supervisor: Ext 57832 Royal Air Force Supervisor: Ext 57885
The Cash Office is situated in the Community Building (450B), Royal Navy and army travel claims and expenses, imprest advances and other similar transactions are administered by a combined civilian and service staff.
The office is open for individual enquiries between 8:30am and 12:30pm daily. RAF enquiries should be directed to the RAF desk in the UPO.
Motor Transport Section
There is a Motor Transport (MT) section on site. Through them, all service local transport is co-ordinated. This includes pickups from local stations or airports for HQ staff and visitors where eligible.
There are only a few service and civilian drivers, so service is limited. Service self drive cars are also coordinated from this office, as are service driving licences.
Local taxis are only allowed as far as the main gate, but may be allocated for duty trips in extreme circumstances.
Enquiries, bookings or for further information, please call the Northwood Helpdesk on telephone: 01923 957000.
Medical and Dental
The Medical and Dental Centre at Northwood Headquarters’ contact numbers, opening times, catchment area and other services available.
The Medical Centre
The Medical Centre is manned Monday to Friday during normal working hours. Out of hours cover is provided by the NHS 111 service.
For enquiries, appointments contact the Duty Medic: Ext 57180 Pharmacy: Ext 57198 Dental Dept: Ext 57194
|Monday||8:00am to 5:00pm|
|Tuesday||8:00am to 5:00pm|
|Wednesday||8:00am to 1:30pm|
|Thursday||8:00am to 5:00pm|
|Friday||8:00am to 3:00pm|
Medical care is available to all service personnel based at Northwood. The families and dependants of service personnel should register with a local NHS GP.
Other services available
- pre-conceptual, ante and post-natal care
- Well Woman Clinic: family planning, cervical screening, HRT advice
- child development assessment/immunisations
- travel/vaccination clinic
- on-site pharmacy
- health visitor
- community psychiatric nurse
- minor surgery/wart clinic
- health promotion programmes: advice on stress, weight, smoking, alcohol
Dental treatment is provided for service personnel only, who should register on joining and leaving the establishment. All personnel should have an annual dental examination where advice on treatment and the prevention of dental disease will be given. The dental hygienist can only provide treatment on the prescription of a dental officer. Families must register with a NHS dentist. A list of these is held in the Medical Centre.
Dental Centre routines
Monday to Thursday:
- pain cases: 8:30am to 9:00am
- routine appointments: 9:00am to 12:30pm and 1:30pm to 4:00pm
- pain cases: 8:30am to 9:00am and 1:30pm to 4:00pm
- routine appointments: 9:00am to 12:30pm
For advice and routine appointments telephone ext 57194
Emergency treatment may be obtained by contacting the Dental Department as soon as any problem arises; out of working hours contact the Medical Centre who will contact the duty dentist. The dental officers take part in a duty roster with other service establishments therefore you may be asked to visit another Dental Centre for emergency treatment. When on leave, the nearest service establishment should be contacted for advice and treatment.
Education and resettlement
The Joint Headquarters is served by a Resettlement and Education Centre. The centre facilitates access to a full range of educational and career development opportunities including GCSE and A Levels examinations. Advice on other educational and vocational qualifications can also be given. In many cases personnel may take advantage of the Standard and Enhanced Learning Credit Schemes to offset the cost of their education.
There is a fully equipped classroom, available for meetings and presentations, an Interactive Learning Facility with nine PCs and a reference and fiction library. Specific books may be ordered through the Centre from the Services’ Central Library. The Interactive Learning Facility is available to all Service personnel, Civil Service and permanently based contractors, offering courses in personnel development and computer operating skills at all levels including ECDL (European Computer Driving LIcence). Bookings can be made via Ext 57898; 24 hours notice is preferred but short notice (20 mins) can usually be managed. The internet facility may be used for both education and resettlement activities as well as forces eBluey. The driving Matrix test can also be taken at the facility; bookings via Ext 57898.
Resettlement interviews are conducted as requested and advice is available at any time. All those within 2 years of discharge should attend a formal resettlement interview with the Education Officer. These may be booked through the Assistant Education Officer ext 57825.
Remember: Education and resettlement facilities exist solely for your benefit. Professional and career development is the key to keeping your skills current and transferable. Everybody leaves the service eventually, make sure you are prepared!
Northwood Day Nursery is situated in the Joint Support Unit at Northwood Headquarters. You can contact the nursery on telephone: 01923 957028.
The HIVE is an organisation that provides an important and valuable information service, within the context of the overall welfare provisions for members of the armed forces and their dependants.
Northwood HQ special features
Free financial advice is available from an Independent Financial Adviser on Wednesdays. A will writing service is also available. Free Legal advice available in the Community Centre every first and third Tuesday of the month. Advice is given by expert independent legal advisers at an initial meeting of up to 30 minutes on a free and no obligation basis. Responsibility for the advice remains with the legal advisor and not Northwood HQ.
Mums and Toddlers group
Meet in the Community Centre Theatre on Tuesday and Thursday mornings between 10:00am to 12:00pm during term time.
There are quality toys for babies and toddlers and organized craft activities. All are welcome. A small charge of £1 is levied to provide refreshments and maintain toy stocks.
Personnel and Families Services Tri-Service Social Worker
The Naval Personnel and Families Service (NPFS) provides a full time social worker at Northwood Headquarters, employed in a tri-service capacity. The primary role of the NPFS is to help Service personnel and their families cope with crisis and domestic difficulties by making available the specialised help that is needed be that of an emotional or practical nature.
The NPFS aims to provide high quality, non-discriminatory services in a timely and non-discriminatory manner. To access this service telephone the tri-service social worker on telephone 01923 957 811 or visit the office in the Community Centre during the following times:
Monday to Friday 8:00am to 4:30pm
Outside these hours a Duty Worker can be contacted in cases of emergency via the Officer of the Watch HMS Nelson Telephone: 02392 726 159 or 02392 722 712.
Northwood site Information
Information on what is happening on the site is published in Weekly Orders and on the Northwood Headquarters website. Both of these can be accessed on DII, the site-wide, but non-NATO IT system. The Northwood magazine is published monthly and contains a variety of information about events on site and in London.
Chaplaincy to Northwood HQ is provided by local clergy whose details are below. There is also a staff chaplain in PJHQ J1 who is the SME for operational chaplaincy issues and has oversight of all chaplains deployed on PJHQ led operations. St. Christopher’s Church is located adjacent to the Cafe and Shop and is open during office hours ( 9:00am to 4:30pm), offering a quiet and reflective space in the busy headquarters. It is also available for services, meetings, presentations and social occasions. To book please contact Chaplain’s P/A.
- Officiating Chaplain CE: 01923 957872 (mil ext 57872)
- Officiating Chaplain RC: 01923 957872 (mil ext 57872)
- PJHQ Staff Chaplain: 01923 957821 (mil ext 57821)
- Chaplaincy Support Worker: 01923 957804 (mil ext 57804)
- Chaplains’ Clerk: 01923 957872 (mil ext 57872)
Services in the Chapel of St Christopher
- Sundays: none, local churches used
- first and third Tuesdays: Mass (RC) from 12:00pm
- second and fourth Tuesdays: Holy Communion (CE) from 12:00pm
- every fifth Tuesday: Prayer and reflection from 12:00pm
Contact details for Northwood site
To write to someone or a team at Northwood please use the following address
Name and workplace or appropriate mess
To contact the Helpdesk telephone: 01923 957000