NEW DEFENCE CUTS ARE ‘A WORRYING BLOW AND WORSE THAN EXPECTED’: DECISION TO CLOSE GLENCORSE BARRACKS ‘CLOSURE BY STEALTH’

Midlothian’s political leaders have said the announcement of yet more cuts in Scotland’s defence estate – including the closure of Glencorse Barracks – is ‘a worrying blow and worse than expected’.

The latest round of cuts to jobs, bases and barracks in Scotland has been long awaited and with very little consultation.

The MoD has now confirmed that another 8 locations in Scotland are set to go in the latest round of Tory cuts – as the cost of Trident escalates out of any kind of control.

Owen Thompson, MP for Midlothian said:

“The decision to close Glencorse has the feeling of closure by stealth, there was no indication it was coming. There was no mention of it in the Ministers statement or in response to my direct question to the Secretary of State.”

“The decision to close the base in Penicuik will have a serious and detrimental impact on the local community, and economy, where our troops and their families have been embraced and welcomed, not to mention numerous civilian jobs now clearly at risk.”

“It is a disgrace that the MOD can take this decision without consulting with the local community and is yet another example of why we can’t trust the Tories to look out for Scotland’s interests”

“These announcements are yet another worrying blow and worse than expected. The UK government has made this another bleak day for defence in Scotland, and for the communities affected by the Glencorse closure.”

Cllr Catherine Johnstone, leader of Midlothian Council said:

”The local community are going to be faced with economic uncertainty as the Glencorse base winds down.

“Trident renewal is veering out of any financial control and conventional defence spending is plundered because of the Tories’ utter incompetence and communities all round Scotland are now paying for it.

‘’Once again the promises given by Tory politicians about defence in Scotland before the independence referendum ring hollow.

‘’These cuts prove beyond any doubt that the Tory UK government cannot be trusted with the defence of Scotland.’’

The full transcript of the Defence Estate statement and contribution from Owen Thompson can be found on Hansard.