NEWS

11.08.2019 | Army pulls thousands of troops out of Germany in major plan to base armed forces in UK
Source - The Sundayy Express

Operation Faran – which aims to get soldiers, civil servants and families back to the UK for the start of the new school term next month – has been billed as “the biggest relocation exercise in UK modern history”. Between 50 and 150 families a week have made the journey home since June. The move is part of a plan to withdraw 20,000 British troops from Germany, as laid out by David Cameron in 2010. Trains have been hired to ship armoured vehicles back to the UK and ferries have also been booked to transport families at the peak of the summer holidays. Most will be repatriated to Salisbury Plain in Wiltshire and based in the three garrison towns of Bulford, Tidworth and Larkhill where, for the past four years, hundreds of new homes have been built for returning families. Colonel Andrew Devey, of the Army Headquarters’ Directorate of Basing and Infrastructure, recently said: “This is a critical year with the movement of 11,000 personnel scheduled this summer.” But he warned returning families: “There is no escaping the fact that UK homes are smaller than those you’ve been used to if you’re currently in Germany.” British forces have been based in Germany since 1945. After the fall of the Soviet Union in 1993, the number of soldiers there were cut from 53,000 to 25,000. But in 2010, the Government ruled that all forces would be removed from Germany by 2020. It said: “There is no longer any operational requirement for UK forces to be based there, and the current arrangements impose financial costs on the UK, disruption on personnel and their families and opportunity costs in terms of wider Army coherence.” The move means that, with the exception of 250 staff who will stay in Germany, the British Army will be wholly based in the UK for the first time in decades. An MoD spokesman said it had “invested nearly £2billion” to support the move, “building over 1,000 new homes and providing new catering, accommodation and sports facilities”.


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