Scottish independence: Babcock in jobs warning

The Faslane Naval Base on the Clyde. Picture: Neil Hanna
The Faslane Naval Base on the Clyde. Picture: Neil Hanna
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INDEPENDENCE would see thousands of jobs lost at the Royal Navy base on the Clyde, a briefing paper produced by the defence company Babcock has claimed.

Last week, Babcock management met representatives of the Prospect, Unite and PCR trades unions to discuss the implications of the SNP’s plans to get rid of Trident.

According to a briefing seen by Scotland on Sunday, the firm, which employs around 6,000 people in Scotland, told staff that “it is unclear whether there would be a continuing role for Babcock should the submarine flotilla be moved and the nuclear infrastructure decommissioned”.

The firm said the SNP’s plans to convert Faslane into the home of a separate Scottish navy and defence HQ also do not add up. It said: “It is unlikely that Clyde as a conventional base would require the same numbers of support personnel, particularly when the number of naval personnel will reduce significantly”.

But a spokesman for the Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon defended the SNP’s plans. He said: “Independence will protect jobs at Faslane as it will begin the transition to become Scotland’s main naval base and also joint force headquarters.

“We anticipate the same number of military personnel as now as well as a large number of civilian jobs.”