3 Royal Welsh and Grenadier Guards train in Germany
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British Forces Germany Commander: 'If You Are In A Major Unit, You Will Be Going'

Brigadier Richard Clements has reiterated that plans to move the last British Army combat units out of the country by 2020 have not changed.

3 Royal Welsh and Grenadier Guards train in Germany

One of Britain's most senior military men in Germany has stepped in to quell rumours of a U-turn on the plans to draw down all combat troops from the country.

It follows discussions by the Defence Secretary and the Chief of the Defence Staff about retaining some Army facilities in Germany.

If that were to happen, Brigadier Richard Clements, who is the military equivalent of a local authority chief executive, has acknowledged that contingencies are in place.

But he’s insisted, current Army plans for drawdown remain unchanged..

"The key thing here is - and I say this to all people in BFG - but I also say it to my German counterparts quite regularly - no decisions have been made on that.

"It’s really important that the Government decision, which was that all major units will rebase in the summer of 2019 and on to 2020, will take place.

"If you think you’re staying, you’re not. You will be going if you’re in a major unit.

"Other plans – we will see what happens – but I emphasise no decisions have been made and I have received no orders to the contrary.”

Tension with Russia means the Army may keep a forward mounting base in Sennelager.

In an emergency, troops could deploy there from Britain to train and prepare for operations.

However, even after rebasing Britain’s military presence in Germany will remain significant:

“We’ve got around 650 to 750 people who are going to stay and they are the people that are in isolated detachments," continued Brig Clements, "to be clear, those isolated detachments in places like Hamburg, Ramstein, people in Muenster that I visited last week.

"Those people will be looked after and we’re putting plans in place at the moment to make sure that they are looked after by Regional Command and/or Joint Force Command to make sure that their level of support is maintained.”

A total of 4,000 troops will have left Germany by next summer.

In early September, a re-basing information roadshow will tour the Army’s German bases, involving local authorities and the Army Families Federation.