UK

Military Housing To Get £200m Of Improvements

Thousands of personnel and their families will see their accommodation modernised with the Government funding.

New Government funding of nearly £200 million will be used to improve Armed Forces housing, the Defence Secretary and the Chancellor have announced.

The money will be used to improve and renovate thousands of homes used by more than 5,000 personnel and their families.

As part of the modernisation, accommodation will have new kitchens, bathrooms and furnishings including re-roofing to reduce the risk of mould and damp.

"Our Armed Forces work incredibly hard to keep our nation safe, and so it is only right that they have a place they feel proud to call home," Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said.

"This latest investment will benefit thousands of our personnel and their families, providing the standard of living they deserve," he added.

Around 3,500 service homes will also be upgraded as single living quarters.

The aim is to improve the quality of life of personnel deployed across the UK and abroad.

"Day in, day out, our Armed Forces make huge personal sacrifices for our country, and it is our duty to ensure they have the best conditions possible," said Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak.

Catterick Garrison housing aerial
The Defence Secretary and the Chancellor of the Exchequer visited Catterick Garrison on Friday (Picture: MOD).

New windows and doors will be installed on properties to provide better insulation, as well as energy-efficient boilers, solar panels and electric vehicle charging points to reduce the carbon footprint.

It is hoped the measure will make the Armed Forces estates more environmentally-friendly.

Families with young children will benefit from new play areas, roads will be resurfaced and energy-efficient street lighting will help modernise sites as part of the funding.

Military estates will also be part of the plans, meaning 30 Second World War accomodation blocks in Longmoor, Pirbright, Westdown, Knook, Nesscliffe and Castlemartin Camps will be replaced.

New accommodation for on-call personnel in Northern Ireland will be provided.

Upgrades to forces accommodation are expected to begin later in the summer and will be carried out over a two-year period.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) says £530 million has been invested in improvements to service family accommodation during the last four years.

The MOD recently extended the Forces Help to Buy scheme until the end of 2022, allowing military personnel to borrow an interest-free deposit of up to half their annual salary, while tri-service bases were recently selected to pilot a new housing scheme.

The £200 million funding announcement follows the news earlier this month that military children will be entitled to free breakfast and after-school childcare.

Cover image: MOD.

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