Chorley MP's anger over Fulwood Barracks closure announcement

Chorley MP Lindsay Hoyle has written to Defence Secretary Michael Fallon to urge him to reconsider the decision to close Fulwood Barracks.'‹

Friday, 11th November 2016, 7:39 am
Updated Wednesday, 16th November 2016, 4:39 pm
Fulwood Barracks

The Chorley constituency has strong links with the Preston barracks, which are earmarked for closure by 2022.

The local Territorial Army squadron​, of which Mr Hoyle is Honorary Colonel, comes under the command of 3 Medical Regiment which is based at the barracks.

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Mr Hoyle said that given the North West region was the biggest recruitment area for the army, the decommissioning of Fulwood raised a number of questions and concerns.

Fulwood Barracks is also the headquarters of the North West 42 brigade – and Mr Hoyle is asking the minister for reassurances that the closure does not signal the dismantling of the brigade.

He also believes that this decision could place additional pressure on other North West Barracks such as Weeton near Blackpool, which would struggle to manage any additional demand placed on it.

The Ministry of Defence has included Fulwood in a list of 50 forces properties it proposes to close by 2022.

Mr Hoyle said: “The decision taken by the minister is ill thought-out and is simply a knee-jerk reaction to raise money at the expense of military personnel and their families.

“At a time of major change, the government should be putting more support and capacity into the armed forces not less.”

The historic regiments of Central Lancashire, up to and including today’s Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment, have had their headquarters in Fulwood Barracks for more than 150 years.

A campaign to save the historic base is already up and running.

And Evening Post readers have vented their anger at the decision.

A petition, which requires 10,000 signatures to force Westminster to take notice – was launched. If it reaches 100,000 names, it would spark a debate in the Commons.

Last night the total had reached almost 2,000.