Military and council chiefs discuss Richmondshire’s development

Barry Dodd, left, pictured with Cllr Peacock; Major General Wardlaw and Councillor Les.

The senior Army officer charged with overseeing the development of Catterick Garrison has met council leaders and stakeholders.

The Garrison will see an increase of approximately 50 per cent of service personnel – around 3,000 people – over the next 15 years, plus their families.

Unit moves to and from Catterick will start in 2020 and, subject to detailed assessment studies, construction will begin at individual barracks in 2021.

Major General Richard Wardlaw OBE, attended the Catterick Strategic Development Group meeting – where he discussed the changes with chief executives and leaders of Richmondshire District Council and North Yorkshire County Council together with senior representatives of the York, North Yorkshire and East Riding Enterprise Partnership (LEP).

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) said it was now working to analyse the needs of new units moving to the area and assessing how they can be developed to achieve infrastructure solutions at each of its Catterick sites.

This includes liaison with the local authorities and the LEP to understand the impact on local services and create a plan.

“Catterick remains a major Army Garrison and where we plan to increase the number of service personnel and their families over the next decade,” said Major General Wardlaw OBE.

“This means we need to provide additional living, working and technical accommodation. The meeting with the local authorities and the Local Enterprise Partnership has proved very useful as we draw up these plans – and we will continue to work very closely with our external stakeholders and partners.”

Leader of Richmondshire District Council, Councillor Yvonne Peacock, added: “The MOD presence in the district is significant to the Richmondshire economy.

“We welcome the national investment in the infrastructure that is required to maintain and expand the military footprint in future years and we will work closely with our military colleagues to ensure these changes are effectively planned.

“Not only do we need the required barracks and technical accommodation but we need to make sure there are sufficient housing and community facilities to cater for members of the military community that decide to make Richmondshire their home now and in the future.”

Councillor Carl Les, leader of North Yorkshire County Council, said he welcomed the joint working arrangements for the planned moved.

“North Yorkshire is proud of its military connections and the great contributions military personnel and their families already make to the life of the county’s communities and economy, both in the Catterick Garrison area and elsewhere in the county,” he said.

“We welcome the opportunity to build on the work we already do with the armed forces. We will work closely with the MOD and the LEP to ensure the maximum economic benefit is achieved for North Yorkshire and to develop effective solutions to meet the infrastructure requirements – including school places and roads.”

Barry Dodd CBE LL, chair of the York, North Yorkshire & East Riding Enterprise Partnership added: “This joint working is essential if we are to capitalise on this growth at Catterick.

“As the local enterprise partnership we have invested in the A6136 junction to provide additional capacity to support growth and we need to work together to make sure the military families are attracted to Richmondshire and can access the homes and jobs they need.

“We welcome this proactive approach from the MOD.”