BAE Systems has been awarded three servicing contracts worth almost £300million to support the UK’s fleet of Hawk fast jet trainer aircraft until 2020.
The contracts sustain more than 600 jobs with BAE Systems and Babcock in Lancashire, North Wales, North and East Yorkshire, and Cornwall.
Under the agreements, the two organisations will provide a range of services to the Royal Navy and Royal Air Force.
Staff will support Hawk operations at RAF Valley in Anglesey, North Wales, RAF Leeming in North Yorkshire and Royal Naval Air Station (RNAS) Culdrose in Cornwall.
The servicing contracts cover aircraft maintenance, fleet management and technical and engineering support for the jets.
The sub-assemblies of every new Hawk are built at BAE’s Brough site before being shipped to Warton where they are assembled with the rest of the aircraft.
The wings are built at Samlesbury and then sent to Warton for final assembly and flight testing.
At least 20 jobs are safeguarded at Warton, with the contracts seen as a major show of confidence in Systems and the Hawk.
Peter Jones, head of Hawk UK availability at BAE Systems said: “These contracts will allow us to continue to deliver end-to-end service for our Hawk customers. Currently we ensure that 95 per cent of the Hawk fleet is available at any one time and we are confident in our ability to continue to deliver this.
“Together with our service delivery partner, Babcock, we have managed to improve the level of support service offered to our customers and reduce the costs of their Hawk fleet. These contract awards demonstrate the excellent relationship between BAE Systems and the UK Ministry of Defence.”
Hawk is the advanced jet trainer which prepares the Royal Navy and RAF’s next generation of pilots for fast jets like the Eurofighter Typhoon and the F-35.
Hawk has been used to train more than 20,000 pilots in air forces across the world with more than 1,000 Hawks now delivered or on order. It is used by the Red Arrows display team.
Around 10,000 people work for BAE Systems in Lancashire.