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Last Updated: Friday, 17 September, 2004, 06:52 GMT 07:52 UK
Moray 'betrayed' by RAF job cuts
Lossiemouth crew
Maintenance posts at RAF Lossiemouth are to be moved
Anger is mounting in Moray over the announcement that 390 jobs are to go at RAF Lossiemouth.

Moray Council said the Ministry of Defence (MoD) had "betrayed" the region with the cuts as the base generates 93m for the local economy.

Council convener Eddie Coutts claims it will cost 10m in lost revenue.

Local MP Angus Robertson said the cuts were a warning of what may follow when the MoD airfield review is completed next year.

The MoD is examining RAF bases as part of its spending review with Lossiemouth and the region's other RAF air station at Kinloss earmarked for cuts.

'Let down'

The RAF is to move 340 military posts from Lossiemouth to RAF Marham in Norfolk and 50 civilian jobs will be shed over the next four years.

Engineering positions and those involved with the maintenance of the base's three Tornado aircraft units will be affected by the losses.

Councillor Coutts said he felt let down by the government after meeting Scottish ministers in London on Tuesday.

He said: "We were assured on our visit to Westminster that the social and economic impact of any downsizing of either station would be a factor that would very much be taken into account and this has obviously proved not to be the case."

Busiest base

Lossiemouth is the RAF's largest and busiest fast jets base.

It is home to three operational squadrons of Tornado GR4s, the Tornado GR4 Operational Conversion Unit, a Sea King Search and Rescue Flight, an RAF Regiment Field Squadron and an RAF Regiment Auxiliary Squadron.

About 2,500 military and civilian personnel work at the base, which was built in 1938.

The long-term outlook for Lossiemouth will not be settled till next year and the 60 aircraft based there will remain at least until then.


SEE ALSO:
Moray RAF base to lose 390 jobs
16 Sep 04  |  Scotland
RAF base cuts sparks economy fear
14 Sep 04  |  Scotland
Army cuts proposal blasted by MPs
15 Sep 04  |  Scotland
Top brass discuss battalion cuts
13 Sep 04  |  Scotland
Army cuts provoke election push
28 Jul 04  |  Scotland


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