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Thursday, 30 April 2015


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I think we should move the SLBM facilities south anyway. The warheads and the missile loading facility are already there. I wouldn't mind betting that modernised facilities would be a lot smaller - Faslane will have accumulated a lot of barnacles by now.

Good thinking, BOE, and I now have you earmarked as Min of Def in my first administration, er but don't hold your breath!

There's a more recent article but I can't recall exactly who engaged me to "work it" or when - probably in the neighborhood of the recent referenda:

"Similarly relocation creates a number of challenges that are not easily resolvable. The site at Faslane is a deep water estuary that provides quick access to the Atlantic Ocean giving it key strategic importance that is very difficult to find in the rest of the UK. Alongside the natural advantages, the Faslane site has developed over time into a detailed network of support for the nuclear submarine system that would be difficult to replicate. As Professor Hew Strachan suggests 'Whitehall would be deeply alarmed by that prospect [of nuclear relocation] because there is no immediate place to take the deterrent to'.

However a few alternatives sites remain, namely Devonport and Milford Haven, although it would be a logistical nightmare to move to these sites. In Devonport space is at a premium thus it would be extremely difficult to accommodate the submarine fleet and its support network. Alternatively, moving to Milford Haven would be challenging as it would be politically sensitive to move the nuclear site to Wales in the aftermath of Scottish Independence and maintain popular support for this move. The only alternative to this would be to redesign the UK nuclear warheads from submarine fleets towards air attack. However, not only would this be extremely expensive but it may cause the UK a number of difficulties with its obligations to the Non-Proliferation Treaty as this would essentially constitute a new nuclear arsenal rather than a renewal of existing supplies."

There is a very large anchorage at Falmouth with open access to the South West approaches. Plus Cornwall is a low pay, high unemployment area. Submarines could be serviced just to the east at Devonport and the missile loading facility is at Portsmouth with the warheads serviced just north of Portsmouth with a good road route via the M3. And there are hardly any Scots round here!!!!

I am sure the MOD has had a plan B for decades. The other problem not so much for the government is what will happen to the Scottish Regiments. Apparantly according to rumour control if the referendum had gone the other way Scottish soldiers would have had their contracts terminated and asked to sign up again if they wished. The Manning Records office in Glasgow will go with a lot of good paid jobs.
It will be a disaster for many people just to satisfy the so called moral standards of the left.
The air bases will close and no doubt factories that supply our weaponry spare parts etc will close. England will have an abundance of labour on its doorstep. The National Savings Bank in Glasgow will probably move south as most accounts are not from Scotland. And guess what the Nats do not care a bit. Such is the mentality of petty nationalism.

I say, steady on, BOE, old chap, that's all sort of in my neck of the woods. I can't have a mixture of nukes and drunken matelots a few miles from delightful South Somerset! Can't you put it all in Essex - or better still, Liverpool?

Perhaps a quick check on Google Maps? Falmouth and Devonport are quite a way from Zummerzet and the other two are already in Portsmouth and Aldermaston.

I think Jimmy, that Nicola the Queen of the Scots, does care. Because the squeals of the unions and so on will soon make life unpleasant for her. The sooner the UK starts moving things south, the sooner she will change her tune.

Finally, I look forward to the day when she and Salmond fall out!

B of F. I have known Nats since the late sixties and believe me they do not care about the jobs. They work on the principle that independence is the objective and if it causes lost jobs and migration then so what. They take the long term view that they can build an economy. In fact I am sure it was Salmond who said Ireland got its independence and had to persevere for decades. And you know hundreds of thousands left Ireland for work many to England!

and drunken matelots

And what, pray tell Duffers, is wrong with the occasional "tired and emotional" matelot? A little local colour is good for a place.

Why does one of your commenters call me B of F? I wish I'd never started out this way!


backofanenvelope. Sorry just sheer laziness and hitting the wrong keys.

Because, AussieD, matelots don't get drunk in the proper manner. Squaddies get totally ratted, punch each other's lights out and then drag all the pub furniture into the street - and set light to it. Matelots, on the other hand, just throw up everywhere, I suppose it's their saved-up sea sickness! The RAF, of course, never get drunk because all they drink is the occasional Dubonnet on ice!

The RAF has gone downhill since 1994!

But I'm sure, BOE, you did your best to uphold RAF traditions until your retirement in, er, 1994?

BOE especially since Biggin Hill. However I am sure we are well protected by this Tory Government. David will verify this 😂

Duffers a [now Gone to God] friend of mine, a Commander RAN once informed me;

The Navy has tradition.

The Army have customs.

The Air Force just have disgusting manners.

As we were drinking in an RAAF Officer's Mess at the time it did generate some discussion.

'You might say that, AussieD, I couldn't possibly comment!' Not least because I was never invited into the Officers' Mess except to clean up afterwards!

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