Trident base to be run by private multi-nationals

Private companies have bid to take on the running of a UK nuclear arms base.

The Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE) could take over the management of RNAD Coulport on the Clyde following a Ministry of Defence (MoD) review.

The base near Faslane is responsible for the Trident nuclear missiles that arm the submarines at the heart of the UK's deterrent programme.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

AWE, which provides and maintain warheads, runs plants at Aldermaston and Burghfield in Berkshire.

The company is managed for the MoD through a contractor-operated arrangement, so while the sites are Government-owned, their day-to-day operations are contracted to private firm AWE Management Limited (AWE ML) formed of shareholders Serco, Lockheed Martin and Jacobs Engineering Group.

An AWE spokeswoman said: "AWE, together with Lockheed Martin UK Strategic Systems and Babcock International Group, is bidding for a significant role in elements of the management and operations of the Coulport site.

"This is currently being assessed by the MoD and a decision is expected early next year."

An MOD spokeswoman said: " Whatever the outcome, the site will remain under MoD control and the safety, security and effectiveness of the UK's strategic deterrent will not be compromised."