Defence Estates has awarded QinetiQ a £5 million contract to manage the Ministry of Defence’s air weapons training activity in the UK over the next three years.
The contract comes into effect in April 2010 and includes an option to extend the arrangement by up to two years. It will cover the Defence Training Estate (DTE) Air Weapons Ranges (AWRs) at RAF Tain on the Moray Firth in Scotland, RAF Donna Nook and RAF Holbeach on The Wash, and RAF Pembrey in South Wales — as well as the Cape Wrath Bombardment Range on the Scottish West Coast.
QinetiQ will provide a variety of services, including IT support, operation of communications systems and the installation, maintenance and replacement of targets. The MOD will also draw on QinetiQ’s expertise in munitions, as the new contract includes a requirement for the safe disposal of unexploded ordnance.
Mike Howarth, MD QinetiQ Managed Services, said, “We are delighted to be extending our successful relationship with the MOD and look forward to providing an excellent service to our armed forces. These ranges do a vital job and have been used as training grounds for fast jet pilots and helicopter crews prior to deployment to every major military operation over the past 20 years.”
Under the contract, the UK military will benefit from QinetiQ’s experience in the efficient management and safe operation of 18 test and evaluation facilities which the company operates across the UK under the Long Term Partnering Agreement (LTPA) with the MOD. The new contract will increase the number of environmentally sensitive sites where QinetiQ delivers conservation management programmes to 15.
Under the LTPA QinetiQ currently manages ten locations which are Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs) or have similar designations.