MP blasts MOD decision to axe North Wales RAF training centres

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Liz Saville Roberts AS/MP (Plaid Cymru Dwyfor Meirionnydd)

Following pressure for answers from Plaid Cymru MP for Dwyfor Meirionnydd, Liz Saville Roberts, the Ministry of Defence have today confirmed their decision to withdraw RAF operations from their base in Fairbourne, Gwynedd, leaving twelve members of staff facing redundancy.

The news comes after a lengthy review by the Ministry of Defence into the future of its training centres in the UK and Europe. The site will cease operation on November 1, 2015. The RAF training centre at Llanrwst has also been earmarked for closure.

Responding to the news, Liz Saville Roberts MP said: I am very disappointed that the MOD have decided to close two RAF training centres in North Wales, choosing instead to sever a long-standing association with North Wales and move its operations to Bavaria.

We have been aware of potential changes to the RAF centre at Fairbourne for some time. Both myself and my predecessor, Elfyn Llwyd, have argued the case for maintaining jobs in the area and have sought clarity from the Ministry of Defence as to what their intentions were.

This is unwelcome news for those working at the centre and their families and is a sad end to a period of great uncertainty.  I have met with those affected by this decision and will be making further representations on their behalf.

This announcement signifies substantial changes to future operations at the site. I will be pressing the MOD to clarify what future operations, if any, will be based at Fairbourne, including their assertion that elements of the Air Cadets will use the base.

I will do everything to support those affected by these changes and make sure the community of Fairbourne receives the support necessary to adjust to this sad news.

Fairbourne has a long association with the RAF and has been instrumental in training and developing the skills of RAF personnel. With this in mind, news of the RAF’s withdrawal from Fairbourne will come as a disappointment to many.”