A decision as to the future of Whittington Barracks near Lichfield has
been delayed yet again Defence Minister Don Touhig has told Michael
Fabricant. In answer to Parliamentary Questions from Michael regarding
whether the Defence Medical Education and Training Agency will be based
at Lichfield and, if not, what will be the future of the barracks,
Michael was told "a decision will now not be made before February 2006".
Michael Fabricant says: "Earlier this year, in April just before the
General Election, the then Minister, Ivor Caplin, said a decision on the
Army Training Regiment would be made in June 2005. These continued
reviews, delays, and indecision into the future of the barracks is
demotivating staff and blighting house prices in the area. At least we
have had temporary reassurance that the barracks will not become an
asylum seekers camp. Even if the both reports are finally completed by
February 2006, a ministerial decision may not be made for months
Minister for the Army, Don Touhig, has told Michael Fabricant: "The
future of Whittington Barracks is subject to two outstanding studies.
One concerns the co-location of elements of the Defence Medical
Educational Training Agency into the site. The other is a study into
the capacity requirements for Phase 1 soldier training, which seeks to
determine the most economical use of the existing Phase 1 training real
estate in the long term. Both of these studies are now due to report in
February 2006 and no decisions will be made before that date." Phase 1
soldier training is undertaken by the Army Training Regiment currently
based at Whittington and other locations. The Government is seeking to
close at least one training centre.
See also News Release of 1st April 2005.