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Lobby of Parliament over 350 MOD jobs

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Lobby Of Parliament On April 23rd To Keep Mod Base At Ashchurch Open

Westminster event follows successful lobby of Tewkesbury Borough Council by GMB members and their families in support of the future of MOD Ashchurch.

There will be lobby of Parliament at Westminster on Tuesday 23rd April as the next phase in the campaign to keep MOD base at Ashchurch open. A delegation from Ashchurch will meet with the Shadow Defence MPs Alison Seabeck and Madeleine Moon.

Last month Armed Forces Minister Andrew Robathan put 350 jobs under-threat at MOD Ashchurch when he announced without notice that the army will be withdrawing from the defence base at Ashchurch and the site would be sold off as location for 2,000 new homes.

This follows a lobby of Tewkesbury Borough councillors by GMB members and their families during the council meeting held 16th April to gain their support in their fight to keep MOD base at Ashchurch open.

A motion was tabled by Councillor Gordon Shurmer and seconded by Council Mike Sztymiak that the council write to the Armed Force's Minister requesting he reverse his decision to close MOD Ashchurch. 

Martin Hird, GMB Senior Organiser, said “The motion recognizes that the closure of MOD Ashchurch will result in a loss of over 350 highly skilled jobs and have a wider impact on the local economy.

During the debate at Tewkesbury Borough Council the importance of MOD Ashchurch as the largest employer in North Gloucestershire along with its strategic importance was discussed. There was also a call for the MOD to make future long-term investment at the site securing jobs. 

The motion was supported by councillors and as a result the Council will now write to the Armed Forces Minster setting out their opposition to closure.  GMB welcome this support of Tewkesbury Borough Council in the fight to keep MOD Ashchurch open and thank all the councillors who voted in support.

However, workers and their families are disappointed that some councillors felt the future of the Ashchurch site would be better served as a housing estate. I hope the local electorate make clear their lack of support for these councillors at the forthcoming elections.

The next phase in the campaign to keep Ashchurch open will be a lobby to Westminster on Tuesday 23rd April.”

End

Contact: Martin Hird  martin.hird@gmb.org.uk or  07809 769378 or Bristol Office: 0117 955 4470.  GMB Press Office 07921 289 880

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