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Alun Cairns accuses Welsh Government of having ‘blocked’ a major new military unit in his constituency

10 Jan 2022 2 minutes Read
Alun Cairns. Picture by Richard Townshend (CC BY 3.0).

Vale of Glamorgan MP Alun Cairns has accused the Welsh Government of having “blocked” a major military unit in his constituency.

The former Welsh Secretary said that Welsh Government’s new Bro Tathan Business Park had taken the UK Government’s designated site for a new defence training academy.

The military continues to have a presence near the airfield, at MOD St Athan, and Alun Cairns called for assurances that they would not also be ejected by the Welsh Government.

“The Welsh Government’s refusal to extend the lease of the land at MOD St Athan effectively blocked a new major military unit coming to St Athan,” Alun Cairns said in the House of Commons.

“What reassurance can the Minister give to the soldiers based at west camp? Do the Welsh Government have any right to the land on which they are based? If so, are they at risk of being evicted in the same way as those soldiers who were based at east camp?”

Bro Tathan Business Park launched in September 2019, on the airfield which was transferred from military to civilian control on 1 April 2019, in a move the Welsh Government described as “clearing the way for new and exciting business opportunities”.

Aston Martin became the first anchor tenant that year.

Jeremy Quin, the Minister for Defence Procurement, told Alun Cairns that the Welsh Government had no power over the land currently held by MOD St Athan.

“I know exactly what my right honourable friend is going to ask, because he has been assiduous in demanding more troops at St Athan,” he said.

“The good news is that the Ministry of Defence holds the freehold for the west camp land, which was not covered by the historic agreement made with the Welsh Government.

“My right honourable friend has tackled me on this issue on so many occasions, and I went to visit the camp. We could not put new units into St Athan given the historic agreement with the Welsh Government, but west camp is MOD freehold and we will retain our forces there.”

In November Bro Tathan was shortlisted for the APM Project Management Awards Transformation Project of the Year 2021, alongside the MOD and PA Consulting, NATS and BAE Systems. The award was won by the London City Digital Tower.


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Paul
Paul
5 months ago

So he is criticising the Welsh Government for using the land that was once ear marked for a training academy. Despite the plans for the training academy being scrapped by the Conservatives a decade ago.

£14bn St Athan defence academy plan axed – BBC News

Nobby Tart
Nobby Tart
5 months ago

It’s a shame that Cairns isn’t so protective over another airport in his very own constituency.

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
5 months ago

The hypocrisy of Tory boy Alun Cairns is breathtaking. More antagonistic claptrap from boy blunder.

Cairns was a useless. Senedd member and an appalling Welsh Secretary with some dubious friends resulting in his resignation in 2019 as a Minister in the Welsh Office.

As highlighted by others. In 2010 a £14 billion project was scrapped which would have employed 2000. The likes of Cairns said nothing but agreed like nodding dogs the decision made by Tory HQ.

Rob
Rob
5 months ago

Is this the same Alun Cairns who put the interest of Bristol Airport over an airport is his own constituency?

Nobby Tart
Nobby Tart
5 months ago
Reply to  Rob

Yes that’s him, the one and the same.
Bristol Airport cannot expand and Cardiff’s runway is longer.

Which of these two airports has landed British Airways transatlantic flights when there’s been problems at Heathrow? Here’s a clue Cairns, it’s not Bristol.

Ieuan Evans
Ieuan Evans
5 months ago

It’s the same Alun Cairns that has no interest in Wales. He is absolutely shameless. Gwarthus.

Grayham Jones
5 months ago

No English military in wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 kick all English party’s out of wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 stop being little Englanders and be proud to be welsh it’s time for a new wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿

Gareth
Gareth
5 months ago

The people of Bristol must have told Cairns that they do not want the military base in their area, so Cairns jumps into action to serve their interests, as he always does.

Penderyn
Penderyn
5 months ago

Oh no, who will think of the military industrial complex and its vast profits?

Don-Jam
Don-Jam
5 months ago
Reply to  Penderyn

At least if it was actually being used for that there would have been jobs. Maybe the new Business Park will bring some.

Quornby
Quornby
5 months ago

Cairns is unique really. Every little thing he says or does disgusts me.

Cat
Cat
5 months ago

So Cairns knows the answer before he asks the question and has asked it before. I’d have hoped that he was more gainfully occupied as Chair of the APPG for Qatar in asking questions on their labour practices and accusations of forced labour being used on building World Cup facilities

Keith Gogarth
Keith Gogarth
5 months ago

The sad fact is that people have such short memories and these brown nosers will never be brought to book.

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