§ Mr. Michael Brown
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what proposals he has for the Army's technical equipments division, Donnington, and vehicle spares division, Chilwell.
§ Mr. Soames
In June last year, the then Minister of State for the Armed Forces, my hon. Friend the Member for Richmond and Barnes (Mr. Hanley) accepted, as the basis for consultation, a recommendation that the Army's technical equipments division, Donnington, and vehicle spares division, Chilwell, should be collocated within a leased building in Telford near Donnington, achieving annual savings of some £6,000,000.
During the consultation process, my Department received a number of alternative proposals for the siting of the collocated organisation. All these proposals have received the most careful and sympathetic scrutiny and have been subjected to detailed financial appraisals. However, none of the alternatives would provide a more cost-effective solution than the original recommendation to collocate in Telford.
I therefore have to confirm that we shall now move to implement our plans to amalgamate the two existing divisions to form the Equipment Support Provision and Procurement Authority within a leased building in Telford by late 1995, early 1996.
We will of course continue to consult with staff and the trade unions about the detailed implementation of the collocation.