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UK MoD - Enhancing training for Royal Engineers

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: 02 September, 2008  (New Product)
The UK MoD has signed a major new deal to enhance training for the Royal School of Military Engineering (RSME) at sites in Kent, Hampshire and Oxfordshire.
A 30-year Public Private Partnership, worth some 3 billion pounds, will improve essential training and provide significant investment for new and refurbished soldier accommodation, delivering around 1700 soldier bedspaces.

The sites affected are the RSME Headquarters and Construction Engineer School in Medway, Kent, the Combat Engineer School in Minley, Hampshire and the relocation of the Defence Explosives ordnance Disposal School and National Search Centre from sites in Medway, to Bicester in Oxfordshire.

From January 2009, military trainers will oversee private sector experts who will teach Royal Engineers skills such as bricklaying, construction and plumbing. This arrangement will free up 300 military personnel to the Field Army from the Training Division.

The RSME Contract has been awarded to Holdfast Training Services, a consortium led by Babcock and Carillion. The consortium will be responsible for the delivery of training support, including equipment support, transport, retail, catering and leisure facilities across all sites.

Defence Minister, Bob Ainsworth, said:
'This is a landmark deal for the Royal School of Military Engineering, which secures the future delivery of world class training for the Army's engineers.
'It also provides significant investment in soldier's accommodation, which will supplement the spending on accommodation already being made across the defence estate. These sites will now transform into efficient centres of excellence, with brand new facilities.'

Lt Gen Nick Parker, Commander of Regional Forces for the Army, said:
'The RSME PPP contract combines our best military engineering training with best practise in the commercial sector. This will deliver improved training, for the Royal Engineers in particular, that will feed directly into front-line support.'

Mr John McDonough, Chief Executive, Carillion, said:
'We look forward to delivering improved facilities to meet the existing and future requirements of the RSME. This builds on the excellent relationship we have developed with the MoD across a range of contracts, the most notable of which is the 12 billion Allenby Connaught project. '

Mr Peter Rogers, Chief Executive, Babcock International Group said:
'We have worked in close partnership with the Ministry of Defence for a number of years to bring this major project to a successful conclusion. We look forward to working with our partners to provide world-class training and facilities management services for the RSME.
'This contract significantly strengthens our order book, which now stands at over 5 billion, and underpins the long term performance of our business.'
The changes also include the relocation of two units - the Defence Explosive ordnance Disposal School (DEODS) and the National Search Centre (NSC). The units will move from their current location at Lodge Hill and Chattenden in Medway, to Bicester in Oxfordshire. The land released in Medway will allow the development of a new, sustainable community as part of the Thames Gateway Regeneration Initiative.
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