I have today laid before Parliament a Ministry of Defence Departmental Minute to advise of the intent to gift up to 59 surplus service family accommodation to the Northern Ireland Executive. This gift forms part of coalition Government’s financial settlement with the Executive and the commitments set out in Building a Prosperous and United Community: One Year On, in which the Government and the Executive set out plans to work together to build on political stability.
It is intended that legal transfer of title will be completed by late spring 2016, with the disposal value of the sites estimated at £3.5 million as at April 2014. Her Majesty’s Treasury has approved the proposal in principle. If after 14 sitting days, no objections to the gift have been received, the transfer will proceed.
In addition to the gift, 605 surplus service family accommodation that cannot be gifted for operational (security and training) reasons inside our existing perimeters; 286 at Aldergrove, 199 at Ballykinler and 120 at Holywood, costing a total of £3.6 million, will be demolished. Enabling works have begun and demolitions will start in late 2016, with the land then being retained for training. The Ministry of Defence will continue to look for surplus properties to gift as part of the shared commitment of the Government and the Executive to take forward plans to build a shared future.