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Raf Stanbridge, Bedfordshire

Volume 974: debated on Tuesday 27 November 1979

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asked the Secretary of State for Defence if he will make a further statement on the future of RAF Stan-bridge, Bedfordshire.

A proposal was announced on 28 September that the various functions performed by RAF Stanbridge should be transferred to other communications centres by 1983. Consultation on the proposal has now been completed and I hope to announce a final decision very shortly.

Can my hon. Friend give a precise timetable of when individual civilian jobs at this station will disappear? When the RAF finally leaves Stanbridge, will the land and buildings be sold, leased or retained?

It is proposed to run down the installations progressively over the next three years. However, at this stage I am afraid that I cannot say when individual posts will go. A proportion is likely to remain until 1982. The technical site will be needed for its present use until 1982 or 1983. It is much too early to speculate on its usage after that, but I shall keep my hon. Friend informed.