23/Apr/2014 - Last News Update: 17:00

Nimrod aircraft scrapping starts at Stockport BAE factory

Category: England

Published: 26th Jan 2011 18:19:28

Work on the controversial scrapping of nine multimillion-pound Nimrod aircraft is under way at a BAE Systems factory in Greater Manchester.

Diggers moved in to dismantle the empty aircraft behind large screens at BAE Woodford, Stockport, on Wednesday.

Unions have criticised the decision to break-up the planes, which is costing the Ministry of Defence (MoD) £200m.

A spokesman for the MoD said ministers had made it clear that the "difficult" decision would not be reversed.

The dismantling process is being carried out by private contractors at the site and is expected to be completed by the end of March.

Unite national officer Bernie Hamilton said: "The lunatics have taken over the asylum when the government orders the Ministry of Defence to break up £4bn worth of world-class defence equipment.

"The decision to scrap the Nimrod leaves a huge gap in the UK's defence capability and is a betrayal of the workers that played a part in its manufacture."

An MoD spokesman said: "Ministers and service chiefs have made clear that the decision in October's SDSR (strategic defence and security review) not to bring the Nimrod MRA4 into service was difficult, but it will not be reversed and the dismantling process is under way.

"The severe financial pressures and the urgent need to bring the defence programme into balance meant we could not retain all existing programmes."

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BBC News, 2011. Nimrod aircraft scrapping starts at Stockport BAE factory [Online] (Updated 26th Jan 2011)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/125630/Nimrod-aircraft-scrapping-starts-at-Stockport-BAE-factory [Accessed 23rd Apr 2014]

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