COMMONS

Committee considers impact of funding cuts and base closures for armed forces in Wales

18 April 2019

The Welsh Affairs Committee begins its inquiry into the armed forces in Wales with a session focusing on the impact of the reduction in defence estate since 2010, and its effect on armed forces recruitment in Wales.

Background

Wales has historically been a strong base for the Armed Forces, particularly the Army with a long history of Welsh regiments. However, in recent years the Ministry of Defence (MOD) has been working to reduce the size of the armed forces footprint in the UK. For Wales, this has led to the planned closure of two major bases - Cawdor Barracks and Brecon Barracks – and a significant reduction in the number of army recruitment centres.

Purpose of the session

In the opening session of its inquiry, the Welsh Affairs Committee will take evidence first from the Director for Defence for Industries and Society at the Royal United Services Institute, and a former Commander of the 160th (Wales) Brigade. In this panel, the Committee will focus on how reduced funding and reduction of the physical estate in Wales has impacted Welsh personnel recruitment and retention in the armed forces. The Committee will also consider the role the presence of the armed forces plays in Wales, for instance their economic and cultural significance to local communities.

In the second panel, the Committee will hear from the Chief Executive of British Army Recruiting at Capita – the company contracted by the Government to manage army recruitment. The Committee will question why Capita has not met recruitment targets, and its specific recruitment approach in Wales.

Witnesses

Tuesday 23 April 2019, Committee Room TBC, Palace of Westminster

Panel 1 (at 4.15pm)

  • Professor John Louth - Director for Defence, Industries and Society at the Royal United Services Institute.
  • Russ Wardle OBE DL – Former Commander, 160th (Wales) Brigade

Panel 2 (at 5.15pm)

  • Cath Possamai - Chief Executive of British Army Recruiting Group, Capita

Further information

Image: Crown Copyright

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