HC 803

Written evidence from the Ministry of Defence

Introduction

1. Origins. The strategic rationale for Army 2020 came from the October 2010 Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR) and the associated National Security Strategy, which laid out what the Army would be required to deliver in terms of types, frequency and concurrency of tasking. The funding envelope was set by the Ministry of Defence as a result of the so-called Three Month Exercise. The outcome was that the future Army would consist of around 82,000 Regular personnel and around 30,000 trained Reservists – i.e. an integrated Army of around 112,000.

2. Context. Against this background, the Chief of the General Staff, General Sir Peter Wall, asked Lieutenant General Nick Carter to conduct a study into the future structure and role of the Army in the context of the strategic imperatives for the Army to change. These included an end to the assumption that the Army would be permanently engaged on an enduring stabilisation operation (i.e. Afghanistan); a move from the Army’s current structure and capabilities optimised for Afghanistan to a more adaptable posture to meet likely future threats; an Army equally able to react to an enduring stabilisation operation and engaging with partner nations overseas to develop military capability to address causes of instability; changing the nature of the Reserves to ensure routine use as part of an integrated Army; an almost completely UK-based Army to engage civil society in a new manner; and ensuring cost and efficiency remain a driver in the force design and optimisation of capability.

The Army 2020 Design

3. On 5 July 2012, the Secretary of State for Defence announced the outcome of the study, which redefined the core purposes of the Army and determined that it should be capable of providing:

a. Contingent capability for deterrence and defence;

b. Defence engagement and overseas capacity building.

c. UK engagement and the military contribution to homeland resilience;

4. In order to meet these demands with the reduced manpower available, the study designed a new structure for the Army. Within the Generated Force – those units that deliver Defence Final Outputs – forces will be divided into:

a. A Reaction Force (RF) that will be a higher readiness force undertaking short notice contingency tasks and providing the Army’s conventional deterrence for Defence. It will be trained and equipped to undertake the full spectrum of intervention tasks and will provide the initial basis for any future enduring operation.

b. An Adaptable Force (AF) comprising a pool of Regular and Reserve forces that will consist of 7 infantry brigades and a logistics brigade. This will be used for a wide range of tasks, including providing headquarters and units for enduring operations, acting as the primary source of capability for Defence Engagement at home and overseas, as well as meeting standing tasks in UK and abroad (e.g. Cyprus, Falkland Islands, Brunei and Public Duties).

c. Force Troops will brigade Combat Support, Combat Service Support and Command Support in ‘functional’ formations, under a 2* HQ, to maximise efficiency and sustainability.

5. Annex A details the units in each organisation. These tables show which units are going to be in which brigades; future roles; the pairing arrangements between Regular and Reserve units; and planned final locations. A small number of unit titles are still subject to endorsement by the relevant Army authorities.

6. Integration. The need to achieve the tasks and capabilities laid out in the SDSR with a smaller Regular Army and a very different mix of Regular and Reservist manpower drove the need to redefine the role of the Army Reserve (in line with the recommendations made by the Independent Commission on Reserves). In this model, Reserves will have realistic roles that can be delivered at prescribed states of readiness and, as a result, the previously envisaged five Multi Role Brigade (MRB) structure was no longer feasible as it supposed all brigades would, in rotation, occupy a state of highest readiness. Delivering a truly integrated Army is therefore at the heart of the Army 2020 proposition. It will be challenging to deliver, but it is essential to future success on deployed operations at home and overseas. Reserves can be employed routinely to deliver military tasks together with Regular colleagues if they are trained, equipped and prepared in a similar way; given tasks and opportunities that have genuine merit; and have the terms and conditions of service to ensure their recruitment and retention. There are plans and resources in place to achieve this.

7. Pairing. Reserves will be paired with Regular units for training during peacetime in order to prepare to form an integral element of the paired Regular unit when required to deploy on operations. To enable this integrated capability, Reserve units will undertake training which is aligned with the three-year operational readiness mechanism of their Regular counterparts. Details of pairing arrangements are shown in the tables at Annex A.

8. Adaptability. Adaptability is at the heart of the Army 2020 plan as demonstrated by the Adaptable Force which will be flexible by design to undertake a wide range of tasks. Adapting to strategic threats (e.g. if Britain faced a national emergency) and to tactical threats (such as adapting to an enemy’s tactics during an operation) will therefore be a key attribute of the Army of 2020. Clearly the extent to which the plan could be adapted will be constrained by issues such as resource availability. Reductions to Army manpower have required a change to the way in which the Army conducts its business. Some of these are novel and, as yet, untested. Significant changes in strategic direction or further reductions in resources could only be met by accepting a greater level of risk to the Army’s ability to meet changing demands. As the Army reduces in size, the scope for making further changes narrows. Army 2020 structures do, however, allow for an expansion of the Army, should future circumstances require it.

9. Research. In undertaking the Army 2020 study, academics and historians were consulted, and comparisons were made with the US, Australia and Canada. Recent operational experience was also considered, as well as the work of those areas of the MOD who look at how those lessons might apply in the future where they are likely to be relevant for future operations.

Implementation of Army 2020

10. Governance. The Senior Responsible Owner for the Army 2020 Programme is the Assistant Chief of the General Staff, Major General David Cullen, supported by the Director of Army Plans in the role of Programme Director. They are supported by a Core Programme Team (including a Programme Management Office) in the Army Headquarters. Due to the scale of the programme, most areas of the Army are involved in implementation in one way or another. A number of separate projects have been established within the overall Army 2020 Programme to deliver the restructuring and the necessary supporting conditions to transform the Army to its required size and posture. This will involve re-roling or merging of units and regiments; delivering an integrated force that is equipped and trained to support demand; changes to ways of working and process to deliver a more efficient Army; and the transformation of functional areas, such as career development and collective training, to establish and maintain the conditions required to underpin the structural transformation.

11. Structures. The early focus of the Army 2020 Programme has been necessarily on the restructuring of Regular units and command structures to ensure that these keep in step with the manpower reductions resulting from the Army Redundancy Programme, thereby minimising the gapping of posts. These structural changes are due to be completed by mid-2015.

12. Dependencies. Given its significance, Army 2020 also forms part of what is known as the Defence Nexus Group of programmes that have significant inter-dependencies. This group comprises Future Reserves 2020, the Army Basing Programme, the New Employment Model and the Army’s withdrawal from Germany. This group of programmes is working closely together to manage these interdependencies.

People

13. Strengths. The tables below show the figures for Regular and Reserve Army strength over the last five years. Data on deployability is shown for the years where it has been formally collected.

Regular 

01-Apr-09

01-Apr-10

01-Apr-11

01-Apr-12

01-Apr-13

Regular Army Strength [1]

99,190

102,260

101,340

98,600

93,940

Personnel Categorised as Medically Fully Deployable (MFD)

N/K

80,650

79,130

76,800

73,680

Reserves

01-Apr-09

01-Apr-10

01-Apr-11

01-Apr-12

01-Apr-13

TA Group A Strength (a)

28,610

27,270

25,700

25,460

24,690

TA Group A Trained (b) [1]

N/K

N/K

N/K

19,410

19,230

TA Group A Untrained (c)

N/K

N/K

N/K

6,050

5,460

Sponsored Reserves (d)

N/K

N/K

90

100

80

(Source: Defence Statistics (Army))

14. Recruitment. Figures showing regular Army recruitment over the last three years are at Annex B. Personnel are not recruited into specific units or battalions, and the figures are therefore shown at ‘cap-badge’ level. Figures for Reserves recruiting are not held on this basis but Annex B contains the figures that are available. The figures in Annex B define recruitment as inflow into Phase 1 training i.e. intake into the untrained strength. It should be noted that the figures for both Regular and Reserve personnel provided in Annex B are not formally published Defence Statistics.

15. Regular Personnel. The reduction in the size of the Regular Army will be achieved by 2018. Whilst reduced recruiting and fewer extensions of service will enable some of the reductions, Army Redundancy is the primary means of ensuring the right balance of skills is maintained for the future across the rank structures. Around 3,800 personnel were made redundant in Redundancy Tranches 1 and 2, and some 4,500 personnel are being made redundant in Tranche 3 (announced on 18 June 2013), with the majority of those selected for redundancy being applicants. Although the final decision is yet to be taken, it is likely there will be one further round of redundancy to bring the Regular Army strength down to the required level.

16. The effect of Army 2020 restructuring is that a number of Regular personnel will need to be redistributed across the Army. Transfers will be prioritised to units nominated to deploy on operations and to high readiness elements, including the Parachute Regiment, with personnel transferred to other regiments where vacancies exist. Specific manning panels have been established to effect the transfers in a rigorous and auditable selection process, overseen by the Army Personnel Centre.

17. Reserve Personnel. An initiative (Operation Fortify) was launched in December 12 to deliver a sustainable Army Reserve of 30,000 (trained strength) by 2018. It focuses the Army on the immediate work to grow the Volunteer Reserve (VR) from its current trained strength of about 19,000. It seeks not only to deliver an increase in capability commensurate with increased numbers, but also to sustain a credible, usable and relevant Army Reserve as an enduring component of the whole force beyond 2018.

18. Recruitment. There have been national marketing campaigns conducted since August 11 in order to meet the significant increase in the Reserve recruiting targets and it is clear that the 2013-2016 targets are challenging. To help address this, the White Paper on the future of the Reserves explains how we intend to develop the role of our Reserve Forces, with a balance of challenge and reward that is properly resourced, supported by the appropriate Terms and Conditions of Service, and able to deliver real capability. The new offer is designed to be attractive to both new entrants and ex-Regulars. Complementary improvements in the quality and coherence of the Reserve training pipeline has been a high priority, with a blend of training packages now available to better suit individuals’ work, home and Reserve balance.

19. Retention. Historically, retention in the trained strength of the TA has been good at 88% (12% outflow). Retention in the untrained strength has been poor due to the length of time it has taken to complete this training, with 70% leaving the Reserves prior to completing Phase 2 training. Work is being carried out to improve the retention of Reserve personnel through the TA training pipeline. Future Reserves 2020 ‘Betterment’ Measures and the publication of the Reserves White Paper should both improve retention through training with specific ‘retention incentives’. Improving retention through the Phase 2 component of the pipeline is the highest priority, and Phase 2 training has accordingly been completely restructured to ensure rapid completion of training and transfer to the trained strength.

20. Regular to Reserve. In line with the requirement to increase the trained strength of the Reserve, policy and processes have been reviewed to make it easier for Regular Army personnel to join the Reserves. Evidence from the Chain of Command suggests an encouraging early uptake. As part of this review, those transferring from the Regular Army into the Reserves may choose between two incentive schemes that potentially impact TA mobilisation liability:

a. Reduced Commitment Scheme. Individuals are offered a reduced call out liability, which remains extant for three years following their last day of Regular Service. Ex-Regular personnel joining the Reserves will not be obliged to fulfil their call-out liability unless there is national danger, great emergency or imminent attack on UK.  After the 3 year concession period, an individual remaining in the TA would continue with the normal TA liability in lieu of any remaining Reserve liability. On leaving the TA, an individual will resume the balance of any Regular Reserve/Regular Army Reserve Officer liability that may remain.  If an individual chooses not to take up the concession initially, but volunteers for deployed service or takes up an FTRS post, the concession period will not be extended beyond 3 years.

b. Commitment Bonus Scheme. This is a financial incentive. Personnel choosing this option are subject to the usual call out liability, stipulated under RFA 96.

21. Recruiting Mechanisms. There has been significant development within Army Recruiting in the period 2010-2013 under two initiatives; Common Selection (1 Apr 12) and the Recruiting Partnering Project (26 Mar 13):

a. Common Selection. Prior to 1 Apr 12, the management of potential Reserve recruits was conducted on a regional basis, with varying degrees of assurance and consistency. In order to generate a high level of confidence that all personnel in the future integrated Army meet the same standards in terms of health, fitness, literacy and numeracy, a common selection process for potential Regular and Reserve recruits has been introduced.

b. Recruiting Partnering Project (RPP). RPP is an Army Recruiting and Training Division (ARTD) initiative to improve the efficiency, flexibility and effectiveness of the Army recruiting pipeline for both Regular and Reserve, officer and soldier recruits. It provides a 10-year, performance incentivised contract, with Capita Business Services Ltd, to deliver recruiting for the Army under a partnering arrangement, and the underpinning digital Information and Communications Technology (ICT) system to support Tri-Service recruiting operations. In addition, RPP is planned to deliver the following tangible benefits:

(1) Reduce the cost of Army recruiting (by c£310m over 10 years from 1 Apr 13).

(2) Release military manpower from recruiting (c1100).

(3) Reduce wastage in initial training and improve Return of Service rates; consequently reducing inflow requirements.

22. Progress. The project achieved Initial Operating Capability on 26 Mar 13; development of the new ICT solution continues and interim processes using the legacy ICT are in place. There have been a number of key results from these changes, notably;

a. The role of Military manpower in Army recruiting has been refocused on the core business of dealing directly with potential recruits (less HQ planning/command functions).

b. The recruitment process has been redesigned to become more streamlined, being administered and coordinated centrally and increasingly managed on-line. There have been some associated changes to the processes between Army recruiting and customer organisations, in particular Army Phase 1 training establishments.

c. Administrative functions have been civilianised and centralised in a National Recruiting Centre (NRC); in so doing, the relationship between candidate and recruiter has moved from high street offices to a Candidate Support Manager in the NRC.

d. Command of Army Recruiting Group is now exercised centrally from Upavon in Wiltshire, through five Regional Operations Managers across the UK.

23. Performance. The performance of Capita will be assessed against set Key Performance Indicators (KPIs); quantity [1] of recruits, quality [2] of recruits, positive recruiting experience and availability/functionality of ICT. This assessment will be monthly and numerical, and is subject to trend analysis. Capita is incentivised against these KPIs to meet banded targets. Failure to meet these targets will result in a reduction in the payments made to Capita. Conversely, if the Army fails to meet contractual obligations, Capita will be allowed appropriate relief against the KPI targets.

24. Costs. The Ministry of Defence doesn’t produce statistical data on the whole life costs of Service personnel. This, when coupled with the differing Regular and Reserve Terms and Conditions of Service makes capturing payments challenging. Furthermore, the different output standards in individual and collective training makes drawing a simple equivalence between Regular and Reserve personnel training costs liable to misleading deductions. Against this background, the following cost information is available:

a. Annual Cost. The difference in per diem cost for Regular and Reserves differs only in the X Factor element of the military salary which is currently 14.5% for Regulars and 5% for Reserves. Presently only Regular pay attracts a Superannuation Charge Attributable to Experience (SCAPE – the cost of pension) which is 42.8% for officers and 30.8% for soldiers. The FR20 proposition will see Reserve salary becoming pensionable leading to a SCAPE levy in the order of 25% while the application of Working Time Directives will see an additional payment, in the order of 10.2%, to Reserves. That said, not all Reserve attendance based pay will attract Employers National Insurance Contributions.

b. Recruitment.  While the Recruiting Partnering Project contract makes separate provision for discrete charging mechanisms for the recruitment of Regular Officer, Reserve Officers and other ranks (both Regular and Reserve), in all 3 cases the cost per recruit is broadly similar.

c. Basic Training. Training for commissioning in the Regulars and Reserves differs in delivery, intensity and duration. The same is the case for soldiers basic (Phase 1) and subsequent (Phase 2) training. For these reasons, and as Regular training is residential, comparison of cost is of limited meaning.

d. Collective Training. The Army has assessed the cost of training both Regular and Reserve infantry company and if manpower is excluded, the costs are broadly the same for a like for like comparison of training activity levels to achieve the established Collective Training Competence Levels 1, 2 and 3.

Training

25. A-FORM. The Army will enter a new readiness mechanism in 2015 known as the Army 2020 Formation Operational Readiness Mechanism (A-FORM). This will have a force preparation cycle based on three years, aligned to the calendar year and covering Training, Contingency or Committed, and Other Tasks respectively. The activities within the cycle will vary between the Reaction Force and the Adaptable Force, and 16 Air Assault Brigade units and some Force Troops capabilities will be on subtly different cycles owing to their specialised nature.

26. Training. All units within the Reaction Force and the Adaptable Force will conduct combined arms training once every three years. This includes those deployed on standing tasks in Cyprus, Brunei or on State Ceremonial and Public Duties who rotate between those roles and the Adaptable Force and therefore must prepare accordingly. Training for combat operations will be the priority for all force elements to enable the Army to remain flexible, adaptable and to maintain resilience. However, stabilisation and other military activities will be included once combined arms manoeuvre has been mastered, and the Adaptable Force will conduct more stabilisation training than the Reaction Force in line with their likely roles.

27. During the Training Year, combat units will follow a progression from individual training through to battlegroup combined arms live exercises. For the Reaction Force, this will be to CT4 [3] and for the Adaptable Force to the lower level of CT3 [4] . Combat Support and Combat Service Support units will conduct ‘special to arm’ training before integrating within Combat battlegroups and taking part in collective training events. Training will be a blend of live, virtual and constructive activity with increasing use of simulation to complement field exercises. Under current plans, battlegroup training will take place at the British Army Training Unit Suffield (BATUS) in Canada for the Reaction Force units and at the British Army Training Unit Kenya (BATUK) and on Salisbury Plain for the Adaptable Force.

28. The Contingency Year for the Reaction Force, or Committed Year for the Adaptable Force, will see Reaction Force units held at readiness and the Adaptable Force deployed, or ready to deploy according to the level of operational deployments at the time. Training currency will be maintained by sub-unit field training and simulated at the Combined Arms Tactical Trainer (CATT) and Command and Staff Trainer (CAST). Units from across the Army will also deploy in support on Overseas Training Exercises, some of which support Defence Engagement tasks with the host nation concerned.

29. The Other Tasks Year will provide the foundations required for the other years of the force preparation cycle, but the primary task will be to support the training of those units that are in their Training Year. Units in the Other Tasks Year will therefore train to CT1 [5] only, although some may conduct higher level training through training support to other formations. Training Support tasks includes those previously undertaken by the Land Warfare Centre Battlegroup, as well as playing the role of the opposing force for BATUS and BATUK exercises.

30. Reserves. There will be greater emphasis on Reserves’ collective training, with increased training at platoon/troop and sub-unit level as the Army resets for contingency. Collective competencies will develop through a new programme of sub-unit exercises in the UK and abroad, which has already seen Reserves training in Cyprus, Denmark and Italy. Reserves’ training cycles will align and synchronise with paired Regular units, and Reserves’ collective training will culminate by integrating with the capstone Regular battlegroup training event in the Training Year. The detail of how integration will work will be developed through a series of pilots in 2013/14.

31. Defence Engagement. Overseas training will form a key element of Army 2020 training and will contribute directly to Defence Engagement outputs, with in the region of 50 sub-unit level exercises each year. These may involve combined training with host nation forces and will practise the expeditionary nature of operations in challenging environments and climates. These activities are all resourced within the Army Future Training Plan, though are subject to the Annual Budget Cycle (ABC) process. There will also be training events where foreign armies take part in exercises in the UK. This could be live field training, or constructive training at the Command and Staff Trainer (CAST). The current multinational training programme will endure, although it will be continually developed and refined through bilateral annual Army Staff Talks, established agreements and Treaties, such as; the Five Powers Defence Agreement (FPDA); the American, British, Canadian, Australian and New Zealand Armies (ABCA) Program; and the Anglo French Treaty on Defence and Security Co-operation. Our membership of NATO will remain central in this area, as will our links with the United States of America, with whom Combined Joint training remains a key means of maintaining and developing the Army.

32. Joint Training. Joint training will continue through Exercise Joint Warrior in Scotland, which is planned to remain as the annual validation exercise for the Air Assault Task Force. With the return to contingency and reset following completion of operations in Afghanistan, Joint training will play as important a role as ever in preparing our soldiers and officers for contingent tasks and commitments.

33. Experimentation. Experimentation will be an important aspect of Army 2020, with a shift of emphasis from mission exploitation to training exploitation as the primary means of identifying lessons. The Contingency or Committed Year of the cycle will be when experimentation is most likely to occur, due to the level of training that units will be at, and this is factored into the operational readiness mechanism. Funds have been earmarked within the Army Future Training Plan.

34. Study Days. The Army runs a number of study days and seminars to discuss and develop its training. There is no centralised policy on whom to invite to study days and seminars as these are generally conducted and controlled by the organising headquarters and therefore subject to the commander’s discretion. However, as the Army faces operations in environments that are not only Joint, but also involve civilian organisations, there has been an increasing trend for headquarters to invite other Government Departments, think tanks, academia and sometimes industry to attend study days and seminars. This varies according to each event and is subject to the normal clearance processes. In terms of the internal audience, good use is made of the Army Knowledge Exchange on the intranet to ensure a wider audience is able to gain benefit from these events.

35. Future Developments. In the Army 2020 era, a ‘Soldier First’ ethos, underpinned by the core components of professional soldiering such as Skill at Arms, Physical Fitness and Fieldcraft, will remain essential elements of individual training and will ensure there is a firm foundation upon which to build operational effectiveness.  Individual Foundation Training continues to evolve as the Army resets for contingency; Military Annual Training Tests (MATTs) will be an important element of progressive unit owned low level core skills training.  The ‘how to train’ will be very much the responsibility of unit commanders. Individual Mission Specific Training courses that are currently delivered as part of the Operation HERRICK training pipeline are being brought into core, where appropriate, to ensure that the hard won lessons from Afghanistan are not forgotten as the Army resets for contingency.  For Defence Engagement tasks, such as Short Term Training Team (STTT) deployments overseas, individual pre-deployment and pre-employment training is defined and delivered so that individuals are suitably prepared for the mission.  In addition, and in support of all training, individuals will be able to develop team spirit, leadership qualities, self reliance and determination by embracing the increased number of Fitness, Sport and Adventurous Training opportunities, including whilst on Overseas Training Exercises.

36. Education and Training. The Command Leadership and Management programme that provides the pan-Army baseline for the professional development of Non-Commissioned Officers (NCOs), from Potential Junior NCO to Warrant Officer, will also cater for the Army Reserve, including accreditation through a number of professional institutes and awarding bodies.  The Review of Officer Career Courses 2 is already delivering improvements in how the Army will ‘sharpen the agile edge’ through the new Captains’ Warfare Course, revision of the Intermediate Command and Staff Course (Land) and to the joint Advanced Command and Staff Course. Continuous improvement is occurring across the pan-Army officer education continuum from the Commissioning Course, at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, to the Advanced Command and Staff Course. In each case, the training progression is being tailored for both Regular and Reserves, integrating the two where practical. There is an increased emphasis on ‘self-paced’ learning and a balance between residential and distance learning courses. Research and investment is being made in appropriate learning technologies.

Basing

37. Background. The SDSR of October announced that the Army would return to the UK from Germany by 2020. This will achieve significant long term savings through the release of major unit locations, reduce costs (for example through health, education and allowances), and make better use of the estate in the UK. In tandem, the changes to Army structures under Army 2020 necessitate a number of other location changes.

38. Principles. The Regular Army basing plan was put together on a number of principles:

a. Coherence. A suitable balance must be struck between the requirements of the Single Services, functional coherence, and the needs of our people. Where possible, Defence Communities are to be enhanced on a joint basis, identifying synergies in some of the enabling functions, such as training, logistics and communications.

b. Access to Training. Where possible, facilities must be available locally to enable appropriate training (up to Collective Training Level 1 for the Land Component, including small arms ranges, dry training areas, and special to arm facilities).

c. Efficiency and sustainability. The core principle behind the establishment of Defence Communities is to rationalise sites into modern, efficient and multi-occupancy shared locations in order to reduce running and maintenance costs and to improve coherence at either the functional or formation level. Equally important will be the delivery of flexible infrastructure solutions that permit future proofing and flexibility of use, rather than bespoke designs for specific units and functions.

d. Regular and Reserve Partnership.  As we move towards a Whole Force, significant efficiencies will be available through the integration of Regular and Reserve infrastructure, training facilities and equipment pools. The Defence Basing Plan will take account of the outcome of the Reserves Review.

e. Integration with Civil Communities. This is to be encouraged for a number of reasons, not least to reduce the requirement for bespoke Service Families Accommodation. There is a balance to be struck: where employment opportunities are greatest, it will be more challenging for our people to afford reasonable private sector housing; but, at the same time, we will not retain our people if we ask them to settle, at their own expense, where there is limited private sector housing, insufficient employment opportunities for spouses, and a lack of appropriate schools and social infrastructure.

f. Regional Representation. Whilst the establishment of Defence Communities will reduce the geographic spread of the Armed Forces across the UK, the Defence Basing Plan seeks to establish a balanced spread of the Armed Forces across the UK. This will help to encourage recruitment into the Armed Forces, will offer choice to Service Families, and will minimise the Armed Forces having to rely in a disproportionate way on any one local community.

39. Implementation. Different basing factors were then applied to each element of the Army 2020 force structure:

a. Reaction Force, including HQs. Priorities were placed on unit, equipment, and then formation cohesion. For example, units with tracked vehicles will be located around Salisbury Plain.

b. Adaptable Force HQs. Utilisation of current locations has been maintained where relevant, although some HQs will have to relocate in order to discharge UK engagement and resilience (Regional Point of Command) responsibilities more effectively.

c. Adaptable Force Units. No change unless there is a compelling reason (such as pairing with Reserve units or closer proximity to Adaptable Force formations).

d. Force Troops Command HQs. With one set of enablers to meet the needs of both the Reaction Force and Adaptable Force, ensuring geographic proximity to operational command units was a factor in some cases.

e. Force Troops Command Units. As for Adaptable Force Units (sub-para c. above).

f. Reserves. The integrated basing operating model is influenced by pairing by geography and demography, and maximising the usage of current sites.

40. Implementation. The plan will be challenging to deliver, and it will be complicated by the requirement for unit moves to be staged carefully to minimise disruption to soldiers’ lives and the lives of their families, including operational tours and the school year. The staging also affords the time to secure the planning approval and conduct the necessary local authority engagement where required.

Withdrawal from Germany

41. Background. Careful sequencing of unit moves from Germany is needed to align them with the availability of real estate in the UK. The intention is to reduce the military population into a smaller geographic area and to close garrison and station locations, providing essential support services, at the point that the final military units depart. This will allow efficiencies to be made in support services, without degradation of service provision, and will also maximise operating cost savings by closing entire sites. Any new contracts will be agreed with enough flexibility to take the rebasing process into account.

42. Military Personnel. The total military population is just under 16,000. These personnel are employed in Brigade and Divisional units, in supporting Headquarters, and in military specialist posts in support organisations (including British Forces Germany Health Service, Defence Dental Service (Germany), Army Education Centres, Royal Military Police, welfare organisations). The main units in Germany are:

a. 7 Armoured Brigade based in Bergen-Hohne Garrison and made up of some 4,750 personnel in the Brigade and affiliated units in Germany.

b. 20 Armoured Brigade based in Paderborn Garrison and made up of some 4,750 military personnel in the Brigade and affiliated units in Germany.

c. 102 Logistic Brigade based in Gütersloh Garrison and made up of some 1,500 military personnel in Germany.

d. The balance of military manpower is made up of Headquarters staffs (HQ British Forces Germany, HQ 1 (UK) Armoured Division), Divisional Troops, Garrison Headquarters and Firm Base providers, plus staff in support areas (including BFG Health Services, Defence Dental Services, Education Centres, RMP SIB).

43. Civilian Staff. There are some 6,800 civilian staff employed in Germany, made up of a number of separate groups:

a. United Kingdom Based Civilian (UKBC) civil servants employed in support functions in Headquarters, on Brigade staffs, and across a range of supporting organisations; United Kingdom Based Teachers (UKBT) employed in Service Children’s Education schools in Germany; and United Kingdom contractors’ staff (for example for NAAFI, British Forces Germany Health Service, and ICS providers); this group in total amounts to 1,870.

b. Locally Employed Civilians (LEC) staff amount to 4,960 made up of 2,100 Dependants and 2,860 German (and other) Nationals from the local economy. This group ranges from subject matter experts (for example, in German employment law), clerical support in Headquarters including translators and technical staff, to mechanics, drivers, and labourers employed in support functions in units and Garrisons.

44. Locally Employed Civilians. The management of Locally Employed Civilians is a key issue and inevitably there will be job losses as we rebase. British Forces Germany will continue to mitigate the effects by applying to the Federal Ministry of Finance for the provision of Tariff Agreement Social Security measures, as well as complying with other Collective Tariff Agreements. The provision of retraining opportunities for our staff will continue to be offered and these are being taken up readily by affected staff.

45. Dependants. In addition, there are currently some 16,900 service dependants in Germany, comprising 7,100 adults, and 9,800 children under the age of 25 who are permanently residing with parents.

46. Future Requirements. In the future we expect to retain military representation on NATO and liaison staffs (Germany/Netherlands Corps HQ in Münster, and HQ NATO Signal Battalion in Wesel). Beyond that, it is difficult at this stage to provide a firm picture of the position post 2020. We expect to retain elements to take advantage of the Adventure Training facilities that we currently use in Germany (specifically in the Alpine Trg Centre), and we are considering whether there might be other requirements that can be met by retaining a very small permanent presence in Germany (no more than around 100 personnel).

47. Costs and Savings. The return of the Army from Germany is being delivered under two separate Programmes; the BORONA Programme which was set up in 2006 to commence the partial withdrawal from Germany and the Army Basing Programme, which was established following the 5 Mar 13 announcement and will deliver the remaining elements by 2020.Costs and savings relating to the withdrawal from Germany are as follows:

a. BORONA. The BORONA programme is responsible for the closure of Rhine Garrison, Münster Station and Celle Station.   The investment cost of the BORONA programme is some £521M with net benefit at steady state (i.e. Germany operating costs less UK operating costs) estimated at some £100M per year. 

b. Army Basing Programme Costs. This programme will rebase units to UK and close all remaining estate not already in the scope of the BORONA programme. The capital investment cost of this is some £1.6Bn and the MOD has set aside funding to enable the withdrawal. There are also expected to be some costs incurred by the requirement for decontamination of military sites. The cost of this work has not been separately identified, but has been included within Germany extrication costs. Work is ongoing to gain greater confidence and granularity of this cost driver through timely identification and remediation of issues on a rolling basis; similar activity at BORONA locations has, to date, mitigated risk and cost.

c. Army Basing Programme Savings. Alongside the costs of rebasing from Germany, there are savings to be scored. It is estimated that operating savings of £100m per year will be generated by 2015/16 and that this will rise to £240m net benefit per annum by 2022/23.

48. German Authorities. Although there is no legal requirement to notify the German authorities of our plans to drawdown the Army from Germany, Defence Ministers have written to the German Defence Ministers on each announcement, (BORONA, SDSR, and Army 2020) to explain the decisions and to give as much detail as is available to the German authorities.  This information is then distributed to all interested levels of the German authorities. The Ministry of Defence has continued to liaise closely with the German Government, the Federal Ministry of Defence and regional and local authorities as our plans have developed.  In addition, we work closely with Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) staff in the British Embassy in Berlin. 

49. The General Officer Commanding British Forces Germany holds the responsibility for liaising with the immediate local and national authorities in Germany.  He discharges this responsibility through Deputy Garrison Commanders and Garrison Liaison Officers at local level, with the support of the Brigade and Divisional Commanders.  He discharges this authority at national and regional level through Liaison Officers and other Staff Officers within Headquarters British Forces Germany, as well as through personal contact at senior level with those military and civilian authorities.  Specifically in terms of the complex areas of estate and infrastructure, the Defence Infrastructure Organisation has a forward located HQ in Germany that has responsibility for engagement with their counterparts in the German authorities at local, regional and national level.

July 2013


[1] The Full Time Trained Strength (FTTS) comprises UKTAP, GURTAM, FTRS FC and LC; Officers and Soldiers.

[1] Subject to SofS agreement, the categories of reserve manpower to be counted against the FR20 Target are Volunteer Reserve Group A (including those serving on FTRS), and Sponsored Reserves .

[1] Defined in the RPP Benefits Realisation Plan as: “the right number of candidates to meet career and trade requirements, loaded onto training courses”.

[2] Defined in the RPP Benefits Realisation Plan as: “each candidate matches the Army’s selection criteria, qualities, values and standards and therefore completes Phase 2 training”.

[3] CT4 is defined as task organised unit or battlegroup training conducted in a combined arms formation context.

[4] CT3 is defined as sub-unit training in a task organised or combined arms battlegroup context.

[5] CT1 is defined as Collective skills training at up to troop / platoon level

Prepared 10th July 2013