Balfour Beatty, Kier Construction JV wins MoD contract

By Sarah Ann McCay09 December 2013

A 50:50 joint venture made up of Balfour Beatty and Kier Construction has been awarded a £121 million (€145 million) contract to construct the new Defence College of Technical Training at the former RAF Lyneham airbase in Wiltshire for the UK’s Ministry of Defence (MOD).

The joint venture, named Hercules, will deliver new single-living accommodation for 1,100 military trainees, purpose-built teaching facilities and a large outdoor training area. Much of the work will comprise upgrading and refurbishing existing buildings.

The scheme also includes a public museum and a new home for the Army’s Corps of Royal Electrical & Mechanical Engineers (REME).

Army, Royal Navy and Royal Air Force will use the facility - the first time in the UK all three forces have had a shared training facility.

The contract was awarded by the Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO), which manages and maintains land and property on behalf of the MoD.

DIO project leader David Holmes said, “This state-of-the-art tri-service facility will help us to support the Armed Forces by providing the best possible training facilities as they prepare for operations.”

Hercules has committed to working with two organisations, the Forces Career Transition Partnership and Enterprise Works, which help ex-services personnel and those who have been injured to find employment. It has also committed to employing ex-military personnel to help deliver the scheme.

Kier Group's COO, Steve Bowcott, said, “Our experience gained in previous MoD contracts not only allows us to provide a transformational facility to the Defence Infrastructure Organisation at Lyneham, but will also help support the MoD in its delivery of vital training to our armed forces."

Balfour Beatty chief executive Andrew McNaughton said, “Over the last five years we have completed defence sector contracts totalling approximately £500 million (€600 million) demonstrating our position as a leading provider of defence related infrastructure for our armed services. We look forward to working with the Defence Infrastructure Organisation and Kier Construction to deliver a great facility for the MOD.”

Work will start on site in early 2014 and is scheduled for completion in the autumn of 2015, when the first students and staff will arrive at the new college. At its peak, the project will employ 900 people.

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