Army to lose 17 units in cuts

The army is to lose 17 units in a new wave of defence cuts announced today.

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General Dannatt: Traditions of my former regiment will live on

The former head of the Army, General Richard Dannatt, has said that he is not too disappointed to hear that the infantry regiment where he begun his career is to be axed.

General Dannatt served in the Green Howards, which was amalgamated with other Yorkshire-based regiments to form the The Yorkshire Regiment in 2006.

He said the traditions will live on even if the name changes:

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Where the Army cuts will be felt

The 2nd Battalion, The Royal Welsh is based at Lucknow Barracks, Wiltshire

2nd Battalion, The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers is based in Trenchard Barracks, Germany

2nd Battalion, The Yorkshire Regiment is based in Cyprus

3rd Battalion, The Mercian Regiment is based in Lumsden Barracks, Germany

5th Battalion, The Royal Regiment of Scotland is based in Howe Barracks, Canterbury

39 Regiment Royal Artillery is based in Newcastle

24 Commando Engineer Regiment is based in Chivenor, North Devon

28 Engineer Regiment is based in Hameln, Germany

67 Works Group is based in Chetwynd Barracks, Nottinghamshire

1 Logistic Support Regiment of the Royal Logistic Corp and

2 Logistic Support Regiment of the Royal Logistic Corp are both based in Abingdon and Germany

23 Pioneer Regiment is based in Bicester, Oxford

101 Force Support Battalion Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers is based in Germany, Wrexham, Prestatyn, Coventry and Manchester

5 Regiment Royal Military Police is based in Gutersloh, Germany

Army Air Corps' 1 Regiment based in GermanyArmy Air Corps' 9 Regiment Dishforth North Yorkshire

1st Royal Tank Regiments is based at RAF Honington in Suffolk

2nd Royal Tank Regiments is based in Aliwal Barracks, Tidworth

The Queen's Royal Lancers based in Catterick, North Yorkshire

9th/12th Royal Lancers is based in Hohne, Germany

Lt Gen Carter: 'There will be no loss of productivity'

Lieutenant General Nick Carter who helped to draw up the plans spoke about the loss of morale from the cuts.

He said: "The reality of the design we've come forward with means that we will be able to do the sorts of things that our allies expect of us. There's going to be no change, in a sense, in what the Secretary of State has called 'productivity'."

Labour: This will be the 'smallest Army since the Boer war'

Shadow Defence Secretary Jim Murphy told Mr Hammond in the Commons:

There is an arc of instability from West African states to Central and Southeast Asia. Non-state actors are on the rise, climate and population change are new sources of tension.

The United States is pivoting towards the pacific while the European end of NATO will take greater strain.

In that context, Mr Speaker, a statement which outlines plans to deliver the smallest Army since the Boer war is an entirely inadequate response.

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MoD: 'Army will have structured readiness'

In a statement the Ministry of Defence has described how the army re-structuring will work:

"Under Army 2020 the Army will be structured on the basis of graduated readiness which means that units are held at different degrees of preparedness for operations.

"High-readiness Reaction Forces will meet the Army’s contingency tasks. They will comprise an air assault brigade with two attack helicopter regiments and three armoured infantry brigades.

"The Adaptable Forces will be based on a regional footprint and held at lower readiness. They will be made up of seven infantry brigades, comprised of paired Regular and Reserve units.

"They will provide further capacity when required and be able to generate additional brigade-sized forces for enduring operations.

"More routinely, the Adaptable Forces will carry out wider engagement overseas to help to build capacity in friendly nations’ armies. They will also fulfil the UK’s standing garrison tasks in Brunei, Cyprus and the Falklands Islands, and be responsible for public duties and state ceremonial tasks.

"Finally, Force Troops will provide the specialist support required by the Reaction and Adaptable Forces, including artillery, engineer, surveillance and intelligence, logistic, and medical brigades.

"The new Security Assistance Group will also engage overseas and work closely with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the Department for International Development. "

Sir Peter Wall: Loss of army units is 'inevitable'

Chief of the General Staff General Sir Peter Wall said:

The Army envisaged under Army 2020 will see our forces become better integrated and fully adaptable. It will capitalise on the powerful merits of a modern regimental system to deliver formidable effect when and where it is needed, and will create the best structure for the Army to face the challenges of the future.

The changes in Army 2020 will demand resilience, flexibility and genuine adaptability from our talented and committed officers and soldiers. It is inevitable that some units will be lost or will merge but we have done this in a way that I believe is fair across the whole Army.

Hammond: 'Army will be more flexible and agile'

Defence Secretary Philip Hammond said:

After inheriting a massive overspend from the last Government, we have had to make tough decisions to implement our vision of a formidable, adaptable and flexible Armed Forces.

After a decade of enduring operations, we needed to transform the Army and build a balanced, capable and adaptable force ready to face the future.

Army 2020 will create a more flexible and agile Army. Unlike the past, it will be set on a firm foundation of men and materiel, well trained, well equipped, and fully funded.

The Regimental system will remain the bedrock of the Army’s fighting future.

Labour attack 'lack of strategic detail' in army plans

Labour's Jim Murphy has said that today's statement is, "long on details but totally short in strategic context."

He went onto say; "This statement has been delayed deliberately to save the Prime Minister's blushes during Armed Forces Day. He sought the reflected glory of the heroes while preparing to cut the prestige that they embody."

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