The Referendum on Separation for Scotland: A Defence Force for Scotland-A Conspiracy of Optimism? - Scottish Affairs Committee Contents

4  A possible Scottish defence force

69.  There have been few models of what a Scottish defence force might look like, especially any which have been worked through in any detail. In the model drawn up by Stuart Crawford and Richard Marsh, they described a Scottish defence force as consisting of:

  • 10,000-12,500 personnel in a two brigade army (75% regular and 25% reserves), some transport aircraft, but no tanks or heavy artillery,
  • 1,500-2,000 personnel in a navy of about 20 to 25 ships, including patrol vessels,
  • 1,750-2,250 personnel in an air force of around 60 aircraft, but no fast jets.

70.  The force outlined by Mr Crawford had a total of between 13,250 and 16,750 personnel.[135] This compares to the SNP's proposed 15,000 regular personnel and 5,000 reserves.[136] In both proposals, costs relating to personnel would account for a high proportion of the defence budget. Professor Chalmers said:

[T]he SNP projection of service personnel numbers is about 16,000 full-time equivalents, and in 2020, which is when we are talking about, that will be about 11% of total UK personnel numbers, but they are talking about a defence budget that is more like 6% or 7% of likely UK defence spending, excluding operations, in 2020, so you have got a much higher proportion of personnel than you have of spending. You can make those two add up, but only by having a defence budget for Scotland that spends a much higher proportion of its budget on personnel and a much lower proportion on equipment.[137]

Francis Tusa agreed:

Manpower is just expensive. If you want large manpower armed forces, something will give, and the equipment will give, which means those armed forces will do less.[138]

As of July 2013, the UK Armed Forces had 11,100 regular personnel and 2,200 volunteer reserves based in Scotland.[139]

71.  Crawford and Marsh estimated their model force would be possible on £1.8 billion a year, and that while it was "very much a basic model" it illustrated what was possible.[140] Importantly, the model is based on the assumption that Scotland inherited the equipment it wanted in the division of assets and it did not include any costs incurred if Scotland did not get what it wanted in the short term.[141] We identified a broad consensus among our witnesses that the Crawford model provided a good starting point.[142] Professor Sir Hew Strachan saw no reason "to dissent from Stuart Crawford's figures as a departure point,"[143] but thought that questions would remain about the "things that are not there that a force might want", for example:

Would it need fast jets? If so, how would it get them? What sort of maritime capability would it want? Would it want frigates as opposed to simple maritime patrol capabilities?[144]

72.  Furthermore, it assumed that all Scotland's initial military needs are met in the division of assets with the UK, and then operates on a £1.8 billion annual budget. It does not make clear what would be the choices, and financial implications, if Scotland was unable to secure all it required in the division of assets.

A Scottish Navy


73.  We asked our witnesses what kind of equipment they would want if their priority was territorial defence, and in particular defence of Scottish waters.[145] Stuart Crawford said his navy of six offshore patrol vessels, six mine countermeasure ships and around ten smaller boats, would be "a navy that would be capable of defending its maritime interests".[146] He said that Scotland would not need ships like the aircraft carriers currently being built in Scotland because "power projection on the scale that these ships could facilitate is unlikely to be a Scottish requirement, and the cost of their aircraft alone would be prohibitive." At the present time, the aircraft carriers, like the Type 45 Destroyers built on the Clyde, are part of the UK defence inventory which can be called upon to defend Scotland as part of the UK. In addition to patrol ships, Mr Crawford proposed that the navy should have possibly two frigates, with anti-submarine or anti-aircraft capability, for "likely tasks of maritime diplomacy, control and escort of shipping, and providing a Scottish naval contribution to regional and international alliances".[147] The SNP Defence Policy Update noted: "A Scottish defence industrial strategy and procurement plan will fill UK capability gaps in Scotland, addressing the lack of new frigates".[148] Further clarification is needed in the White Paper to establish how many frigates the Scottish Government would wish to inherit and, consequently, how many it would wish to buy new, and when.

74.  The main issues around surface vessels in a navy which concentrated on maritime patrol of territorial waters appeared to be whether Scotland would need anything more than patrol vessels, and whether would there be a role for larger ocean-going vessels with sophisticated equipment such as anti-submarine surveillance. Professor Smith explained that many of the Royal Navy's ships, such as its frigates, were expensive because they are built to withstand difficult conditions such as in the North Atlantic and because of the sophisticated equipment they carry. The Royal Navy is currently at the design stage for the new Type 26 Frigates, estimated to cost between £250 million and £350 million each, with an expected crew of around 120.[149]

75.  Professor Smith suggested Scotland would have more use for big patrol boats, which would be a lot cheaper than frigates:

It would be a much simpler patrol boat—a corvette type of thing—which would be there primarily for fishery protection, protection of North sea oil and occasional issues to do with piracy and terrorism.[150]

The Royal Navy River Class Offshore Patrol Vessel has a crew of 30.

76.  Scotland could hope to inherit one of the current Royal Navy Frigates, the Type 23s due to be replaced by the new Type 26, but Professor Chalmers said even a refurbished Type 23 Frigate would be too sophisticated for patrolling Scottish waters.[151] Professor Chalmers said that the focus for a Scottish navy would not be frigates:

Scotland might well end up inheriting one frigate, but that would not be the centrepiece of its navy in terms of what it had to confront; it would have to have a significant number of other smaller vessels.[152]

77.  The Scottish Government should identify, in the Independence White Paper, the preferred type and number of surface vessels which would be required, what their role would be, and how this compares to the assets currently provided by the Royal Navy. It should also clarify whether the Scottish navy would be limited to the protection of its territorial waters or have an ocean-going capacity. We are unconvinced that an ocean-going complex warship the size of a frigate would be the most effective way of meeting the priorities of a separate Scotland, particularly if resources were limited. However, if the Scottish Government decides that it wishes to order new Type 26 Frigates, or other vessels, to keep the Clyde shipyards busy, then they must spell out the patterns of orders, the cost, and in particular the date of commencement, to clarify how they will avoid any interruption in work flow and how this will impact upon the proposed defence budget.


78.  The debate on possible naval vessels has also included suggestions that Scotland might replace the nuclear fleet with conventional submarines—commonly diesel electric. Professor Smith gave some reasons why a country would use submarines:

If you have a fleet, submarines are quite effective at protecting it, but we do not imagine the Scottish fleet going off doing that. If you want to deliver special forces into hostile areas, submarines are very effective at doing that, but, again, it is unlikely that the Scots would be doing that. As for patrolling particular areas in the Arctic without being seen, submarines can do that. Their advantage is stealth. I am just not clear why Scotland would require that.[153]

Similarly, Dr Phillips O'Brien, Scottish Centre for War Studies, University of Glasgow, said:

You don't need submarines at this point to protect the North sea assets; you need surface vessels, helicopters and air power.[154]

Professor Chalmers thought that if Scotland did acquire submarines it would be in order that it could contribute to an alliance or regional security.[155]

79.  Stuart Crawford recognised the possible benefits of a submarine capability for "policing sea routes and defending against foreign naval aggression" and supported the idea of Scotland having submarines in an earlier 1997 report.[156] In his 2012 report he decided against it, because Scotland would not want nor be able to afford the current nuclear ones, and there are no conventional submarines in the Royal Navy to inherit.[157] Apart from the SNP Defence Policy Update, the only other advocate for submarines that we can find is the Scottish Global Forum report, Securing the Nation, which considered the usefulness of Scotland acquiring submarines and said:

Given that the cost of a new submarine of the type we specify would be between £210 and £330 million each, the cost of one—or even two—of these boats is a financial commitment that is manageable when one considers the 'start-up' fund that Scottish military planners would have to draw from in light of a negotiated settlement agreement between Edinburgh and London.[158]

In our previous report, Separation Shuts Shipyards, we received evidence from Professor Trevor Taylor, Head of RUSI's Defence, Industries and Society Programme, and Dr Henrik Heidenkamp, Research Fellow at RUSI, on the subject of Scotland acquiring its own submarines. They said:

Scotland would have to decide on the broad share of its defence budget that it wished to invest in new equipment. [...] the average for NATO countries on the Western littoral of Europe is 15.8% and the median figure was 16.4%, so an estimate of 16% might be thought reasonable. That would yield an annual equipment spend for Scotland of between £272 and £336 million, roughly speaking the cost of one submarine.[159]

We concluded submarines are both very difficult and expensive to build.[160] There appears to be an assumption that purchasing conventional submarines would be possible because of the cash negotiated in lieu from the UK after separation. Again, the Scottish Government's White Paper must spell out how much it expects to have available to spend on new submarines, whether it plans to have these built in Scotland and to what timetable.

80.  If the nuclear submarines are evicted from the Clyde then any replacement conventional submarines will be much smaller than the current nuclear submarines in the Royal Navy—an Astute Class submarine has a crew of 98, a Trafalgar Class submarine has a crew of 130, a Vanguard Class submarine has a crew of 135.[161] The Norwegian ULA Class conventional submarines have a crew of 21.[162] The nuclear submarines in Scotland make a difference to the number of support personnel required. There are 4,530 regular Royal Navy personnel based in Scotland.[163] For comparison, the entire Norwegian navy, with five frigates (built in Spain) and six conventional submarines (built in Germany), has 4,000 personnel.[164]

81.  It is not clear whether the SNP defence industrial strategy and procurement plan for submarines, or frigates, is a cast iron commitment or a long-term aspiration. Nor is it clear how this would be scheduled to provide a steady work flow if, as anticipated, the UK Government remains wedded to retaining sovereign capability for complex warships and orders production of the Type 26 from BAE Systems from within the UK's new boundaries. While recognising that the Scottish Government does not accept this perspective, nevertheless we believe there has to be a Plan B to take account of what most neutral observers believe is inevitable.

82.  Acquiring submarines would mean putting a large portion of the defence budget into a very expensive asset which would not be the most cost-effective way to deal with the day to day needs of the Scottish navy. Most of the evidence we received indicated that if a separate Scotland assessed the risks it faces, and chose to acquire submarines, then these would be incredibly expensive if built in Scotland; therefore we believe it would be highly unlikely that they would ever be built here.

A Scottish Air Force


83.  Until 2011, UK maritime patrol capacity was provided by the Nimrod MR2 fleet based at RAF Kinloss. The fleet was due to be replaced by the Nimrod MRA4, until the MRA4 was cancelled due to delays and cost overruns.[165] The Royal Navy currently uses a mixture of sea and helicopter-based surveillance.[166] Much of the evidence we heard suggested that if Scotland concentrated on territorial defence, then this would mean patrolling its coastline, waters and airspace. Stuart Crawford said maritime surveillance aircraft would be a "high priority"[167] and the SNP defence motion included maritime patrol aircraft in the items to be addressed by a Scottish defence industrial strategy and procurement plan.[168]

84.  However, it is unlikely the Nimrod would have suited the needs of a Scottish air force carrying out "coastguard-type operations".[169] For example, one of its roles was to be the protection of the Trident submarines.[170] Both Stuart Crawford and Professor Chalmers thought Scotland could purchase something like the P-3 Orion.[171] The Scotland Institute report, Defence and Security in An Independent Scotland, said:

The case for reinstatement of maritime surveillance capacity at Kinloss is not without merit. The question is whether IS [Independent Scotland] would be best placed to undertake that task. There are alternatives to the Nimrods which might be purchased, such as the Lockheed P-3 Orion or the more sophisticated Boeing P-8A Poseidon. These, however, do not come cheap ($45 million and $175 million apiece respectively).

The report continued:

Any commitment to develop a fleet would thus make a major and probably unsustainable dent in an independent Scotland's modest defence budget.[172]

Dr Murrison also questioned whether Scotland would have the capability to address any threat identified by their surveillance aircraft:

There is simply no point in having this unless you are going to do something with what the aircraft is able to deliver to you—in other words, the intelligence and capability of dealing with any threat that the aircraft may reveal.[173]

There appears to be an assumption that purchasing, not inheriting, maritime patrol aircraft would be possible because of the cash negotiated in lieu from the UK after separation. Again this would seem to be further evidence of a conspiracy of optimism.

85.  The Scottish Government must identify in the Independence White Paper what Scotland's maritime patrol aircraft would do, what level of technology the aircraft would require, whether their role would be limited to Scotland's territorial waters, how many of their preferred type of maritime patrol aircraft would be required, and at what costs, both capital and revenue.


86.  The UK monitors its airspace with a network of civilian and military radar stations, which feed centrally into RAF Boulmer, Northumberland. If any unidentified or unauthorised aircraft enter UK airspace then the RAF maintain a Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) fleet of Typhoons, held at 24 hour readiness and available to intercept the rogue aircraft.[174] The UK QRA force has two bases: QRA South is RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire and QRA North is RAF Leuchars in Fife. QRA North is due to move to RAF Lossiemouth in 2014.

87.  The RAF exchanges information with NATO Combined Air Operations Centre at Finderup, Denmark,[175] as part of the UKs contribution to collective policing of NATO Air Policing Area 1 (UK, Norwegian, Icelandic, Danish and international airspace).[176] Between 2006 and 2011, the UK QRA force was scrambled on 87 occasions, either because Russian military aircraft approached NATO Air Policing Area 1, or because aircraft entered UK civil airspace that were causing concern to air traffic controllers.[177]

88.  The SNP Defence motion said Scotland would carry out domestic air patrol duties and the fast jets it would use to do this would be made up "initially" of Scotland's share of current assets.[178] Keith Brown MSP told the Defence Committee that:

I think the Typhoons would be beyond the requirements of an independent Scotland. Obviously we have contributed substantially to their cost, but there may be more suitable ways for us to provide air cover.[179]

89.  Stuart Crawford said Scotland would need to carry out air policing, but said the choice of aircraft was limited to what could be inherited from the UK assets: Typhoons, Tornadoes or Hawks. He said

I do not think an independent Scotland needs aircraft like the Typhoon, which is hugely sophisticated and much more expensive than the Hawk aircraft.[180]

And that:

I do not see how a small country like Scotland with limited military aspirations—I have assumed that, in the absence of foreign policy—would require Typhoon jets unless it wanted to make a specific contribution to some wider alliance.[181]

90.  The Crawford model chose Hawks. The debate as to whether Hawks can carry out air policing for Scotland is well rehearsed elsewhere.[182] The argument in favour is that they are available, can be operated reasonably cheaply, and could be adapted to carry out the role of an attack aircraft. The arguments against include the fact that the Hawk is a training aircraft, without sophisticated radars or target-acquisition systems, has limited firepower and can only travel at subsonic speed.[183] It is not as effective as either a Typhoon or a Tornado.[184] Keith Brown said he thought that "there could very well be a role" for Hawks but that they would not be able to do air intercepts—essentially what the QRA does.[185]

91.  Alternatively, several witnesses suggested Scotland might buy some second-hand F-16s[186]—what Stuart Crawford called, the 'smaller nations' aircraft of choice.[187] Others have suggested Scotland buy some Gripens from Sweden.[188] Norway and Denmark both have F-16s.[189] However, Stuart Crawford said:

We cannot just take the Danish model, as many commentators attempt to do, and say that because the Danish have four squadrons of F16 jets—or whatever it is—we should have that as well because we have the same population size. Their political stance on a whole host of issues is likely to be completely different. [190]

Again, there appears to be an assumption that purchasing, not inheriting, jet aircraft would be possible because of the cash negotiated in lieu from the UK after separation. Evidence would be helpful as to the justification, scale and timing of any cash transfer.

Operating costs

92.  Several witnesses pointed out that operating cost for sophisticated aircraft was a more important determining factor than the initial capital cost.[191] Professor Smith explained:

It depends on what sort of avionics, radar and missiles have gone in. That is why very often they cover a whole range of variants, depending on the capability of it. Then you need the training sites in order to get the whole thing through. The infrastructure is probably five times the purchase cost in order to keep the whole structure going.[192]

93.  The MoD calculated the cost of a Typhoon in 2010-11 was £70,000 per flying hour compared to the RAF Hawk T1 at £10,000 per flying hour.[193] The RAF maintains its aircraft to be ready to go at very short notice.[194] On our visit to RAF Leuchars we were told that if a Typhoon had to stay in the air for prolonged periods, then they could receive air-to-air refuelling from tanker aircraft based at RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire.[195] A separate Scotland could reduce its operating costs by having its jets at a lower state of readiness, but Professor Smith explained that, while this reduced the maintenance costs, the pilots got fewer hours in the air, less training and gained much less experience.[196]

94.  Throughout our inquiry we have found the term 'fast jet' to be unhelpful. Speed is important, particularly the ability to fly faster than your enemy, but the term implies that speed is the only relevant factor. Richard Marsh, co-author with Stuart Crawford of the their proposed defence model for a separate Scotland, said:

Ideally, looking at the other document [SNP motion], we would like someone to sit down and explain exactly what is a fast jet, what has been assumed in terms of operating and capital cost and so on, and how that stacks up with the £2.5 billion.[197]

95.  Other factors, such as the sophistication of the onboard radar, the target acquisition systems, the weaponry, the skills of the pilots and the availability of training are also relevant to their effectiveness. These factors add to the expense.

96.  Whether a separate Scotland would be in possession of fast jets, and if so which, remains a crucial question which must be addressed in the forthcoming White Paper. The SNP has said it would have fast jets for domestic air policing duties. If so, it should make clear how this would be delivered, and also clarify whether the intention is to have a Scottish air force capable of carrying out its own air policing duties on the first day of independence.


97.  The Crawford model proposed Scotland would have around six Hercules aircraft and six Chinook helicopters.[198] The SNP motion said that their inheritance from UK assets would include "transport aircraft and helicopters". Similar to fast jets, assets like Chinooks have high fixed costs,[199] and Professor Chalmers said it was unlikely Scotland could afford fast jets as well as Chinooks.[200] There was also a question as to the purpose of Scotland acquiring transport aircraft, especially expensive ones. Many countries do not have transport aircraft capable of carrying very large loads long distances.[201] Professor Chalmers said:

It is a matter of degree and size. On this budget, Scotland could afford some transport aircraft, but the more difficult the place to get to, the further away it is and the more equipment they have to take and so on, the more they would have to rely on others.[202]

Neither Chinooks or Hercules are currently based in Scotland.[203]

98.  The kind of air transport that Scotland would need would depend on what the Scottish Government would want its armed forces to do, and how far from Scotland it wished to travel. If the intention is to prioritise territorial defence, with reduced involvement in overseas deployment, then the need for transport aircraft diminishes. The Independence White Paper should set out the role of any transport aircraft, and whether the aircraft would be used to transport Scottish personnel and equipment within Scotland or whether the intention is to use their transport aircraft on an international basis, including in conflict situations.

Air force Personnel

99.  The current Royal Air Force presence in Scotland provides the air policing role and to provide a home base for three squadrons of Tornadoes and one squadron of Typhoons. As a result there are over 3,400 regular Air Force personnel in Scotland.[204] Sir Nick Harvey said that, following the closure of RAF Leuchars, RAF Lossiemouth would have three squadrons and about 1,500-2,000 personnel. This includes pilots and support staff. Stuart Crawford proposed an air force of between 1,750 and 2,250 personnel. This is based on two squadrons of Hawk jets and some transport planes and helicopters, totalling around sixty aircraft. This provides a ratio of about thirty staff per aircraft. Any reduction in the number of squadrons based in Scotland, the number of aircraft in each squadron and the state of readiness required for the aircraft would result in a reduction in the number of air force staff in Scotland. The Scottish Government should spell out clearly the number and types of aircraft and helicopters it hopes to inherit, those it consequently would intend to purchase and the implication for numbers of service personnel and civilian support staff.

A Scottish Army


100.  The SNP defence motion said it would have an army "organised into one regular and one reserve Multi Role Brigade (MRB)" and that "the Multi Role Brigade structure and interoperable air and sea assets will provide deployable capabilities for United Nations sanctioned missions."[205] There is no detail as to how many of the 15,000 regular and 5,000 reserve personnel proposed in the SNP defence motion would be in the army.[206] The Crawford model had a similar total number of personnel and a two brigade army of between 10,000 and 12,500,[207] with one brigade of reserves with a territorial focus, and one made up of full-time personnel with the ability to deploy overseas but not necessarily to deploy independently.[208]

101.  The ability, and willingness, of a Scottish army to send units of its army abroad would be important if Scotland wanted to join NATO.[209] Denmark is in NATO. It does not have much expeditionary capability,[210] but elements of its army served in Iraq, Kosovo and Afghanistan.[211] Ireland is not in NATO. Ireland contributed seven personnel to ISAF Afghanistan. Francis Tusa described the Irish army as "not even a gendarmerie [...] a pretty ineffective force that has to rely on everyone else for anything."[212] It has contributed to UN peace keeping in small numbers, and presently, has over 450 peace keeping troops in southern Lebanon (UNIFIL).[213]

102.  Keith Brown MSP told the Defence Committee that the Scottish Government had thought the Multi Role Brigade of about 6,000 full-time soldiers and one reserve brigade would suit its purposes, but appeared to roll back from this position.[214] It is unclear what this would mean for the pledge to have a two brigade army or a size of full-time personnel in a Scottish army.

103.  However, the SNP defence motion also said: "Regular ground forces will include current Scottish raised and restored UK regiments."[215] There is no further information on what "current Scottish raised and restored UK regiments" means, but in evidence to the Defence Committee, Keith Brown MSP referred to: "our commitment to reinstate Scottish regiments previously abolished."[216] This clearly would have an impact on the number of full-time personnel in a Scottish army.


104.  We tried to establish what the idea of "current Scottish raised and restored UK regiments" meant for the number of personnel in a Scottish army, what capabilities it would have, and how this matched with the priorities for a separate Scotland outlined earlier. Sir Nick Harvey MP said that nine of the 141 Regular Regiments/Battalions in the British Army draw their historical origin from Scotland. These are the five infantry battalions, formed into the Royal Regiment of Scotland in 2006: The Royal Scots Borderers, The Royal Highland Fusiliers, The Black Watch, The Highlanders, and The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders. The other four were the 1st Battalion Scots Guards, The Royal Scots Dragoon Guards, 19th Regiment Royal Artillery and 40th Regiment Royal Artillery.[217]

105.  It is not clear if the pledge to restore previously abolished regiments goes back further than the creation of the Royal Regiment of Scotland in 2006. The Royal Scots Borderers had been created by the amalgamation of the Royal Scots and the King's Own Scottish Borderers earlier in 2006. If the intention is to go back further, then going back to before 1994 would allow the Gordon Highlanders and the Queen's Own Highlanders to be restored. Going back to 1968 would allow the Cameronians to be restored.[218] The problem would be that this would create more infantry.

106.  The desire to form an army out of the traditional Scottish regiments is also complicated by what seems to be an arbitrary definition of what a Scottish regiment could be. This is exemplified by the example of the Scots Guards. Stuart Crawford's proposed army, which followed a similar pattern of using the regiments and battalions in Scotland which recruit in Scotland, did not include the Scots Guards. Stuart Crawford said this was because "their long-standing integration as part of the Brigade of Guards raises questions about whether they might ever form part of the Scottish Army."[219] Dr Mileham agreed that the Scots Guards would consider themselves a Guards regiment first. He also pointed out he thought it unlikely the Scottish Government would want to "disturb those sorts of constitutional arrangements that include household troops."[220] In contrast, the First Minister for Scotland has said he wanted a Scottish army to include the Scots Guards.[221]

107.  In a speech on 14 March 2013, Philip Hammond MP, the Secretary of State for Defence, said that the five battalions of the Royal Regiment of Scotland, plus the Scots Guards, the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards, and the King's Own Borderers would add up to 4,650 posts. That would mean almost a third of a Scottish army made up of infantry and one Cavalry regiment. In general, a brigade consists of a headquarters, several combat battalions and supporting troops. The nature of the combat battalions and supporting troops varies according to whatever task the deployment has been given. Mr Hammond pointed out that the British Army had a ratio of 1:2 for frontline troops to support personnel and, if the Scottish army operated with a similar proportion, then that would require nearly 9,000 support personnel:

So if these fighting units are going to be supported by artillery, supplied by logisticians, kept on the move by engineers, and able to talk to each other thanks to signallers, then that's 14,000 of the entire defence force of 15,000 used up just on ground forces.[222]

Unfortunately, only one unit of the raised and restored UK regiments could be described as 'support' arms, i.e. the 19th Regiment Royal Artillery. To compare, a brigade in the British Army, the 4th Mechanised Brigade recently deployed to Afghanistan, included five battalions of infantry (one of which was 1 Scots, formerly the Royal Scots Borderers), two Cavalry Battalions, and also units of Artillery, Signals, Logistics and Military Policemen.[223]

108.  Dr Patrick Mileham told us that, if there was an upper limit of 15,000, and this had to include the air force and navy, which he estimated to be about 2,000 to 3,000 each, that would mean an army of about 9,000.[224] He said the combat to support troops ratio within that would be about one third to two thirds,[225] or 3,000 combat and 6,000 support.[226] The army proposed by the SNP does not appear to allow sufficient room for the range of support units such as Signals or Logistics.[227]

109.  Dr Mileham said the ratio between combat and support personnel could be altered by relying on other nations in an alliance to fill the gaps of what Scotland did not have.[228] This would require Scotland to be part of an alliance, such as NATO, with other members which had the units Scotland lacked.[229]


110.  Professor Tim Edmunds, Professor of International Security, University of Bristol, commenting on the SNP proposal, said:

The proposed size of the SDF [Scottish Defence Force] would represent a significant constraint on their capacity for independent deployment in multinational missions and the nature of tasks they could undertake therein. Given the need to rotate troops in and out of theatre, as well as to provide for territorial defence, training, logistics and other support functions at home, and across land, sea and air environments would likely be very modest.

He said a small, well funded SDF could offer contributions to multinational operations, but "as with many other smaller states, in most cases these would need to be integrated within contingents from larger contributors."[230]

111.  We asked our witnesses their views on the value in emphasising the Scottish Regiments. Francis Tusa said:

They would also be very expensive armed forces in terms of just paying people. If an independent Scotland wanted seven named infantry battalions, plus named artillery regiments and armoured regiments, fine. They will just be very manpower-intensive and expensive armed forces, which will not necessarily be able to do much.[231]

And if Scotland did not send its army overseas, Francis Tusa said:

I think taxpayers in an independent Scotland after five years would be saying, "Why have we got all these barracks and units when they don't seem to go anywhere?"[232]

Professor Chalmers said that the SNP defence motion pointed toward: "a much more army-focused force structure" which reflected "the stronger political imperative of the Scottish regiments as compared with maintaining naval or air capability."[233]

112.  The intention to create a regular army based on the historical Scottish regiments does not appear to be based on any strategic assessment. The emphasis on infantry means the budget leans towards proportionately high personnel costs and therefore less resource being available to purchase and maintain equipment.

113.  The issue remains, if a separate Scottish State is a Member of NATO and wishes to retain the capability to take part in overseas wars, then it might be expected to retain full time, well trained infantry regiments. If it is not in NATO or adopts the Irish model of only taking part in peace keeping exercises, then the justification for a large standing army is diminished.

114.  It is essential that the Scottish Government's White Paper clarifies exactly what is meant by "current Scottish raised and restored UK regiments" and tells us which units will exist in a separate Scottish army, the size of these units, which will be reserves, the level of supporting units that will be provided and the overall cost of this provision.


115.  The British Army currently has a 75% regular to 25% reserve split. The SNP motion also has a ratio of 75% regular to 25% reserves, but this is for all three services and there is no detail on the split for the army.[234] Reserves are cheaper than regular soldiers, a reserve is around 20 per cent of the cost of a full-time regular soldier.[235] Other countries have a higher proportion of reserves, for example Norway has 25,000 regulars and 50,000 reserves.[236]

116.  Professor Strachan said if Scotland was going to focus on territorial defence, then "it implies a big switch away from regulars to reservists [...] that implies a commitment to defend Scotland and not much more."[237] Stuart Crawford said that, while his model provided for the five infantry units of the Royal Regiment of Scotland, he conceded that some of those units in his model, which are currently regular battalions, might become territorial battalions.[238] Keith Brown MSP told the Defence Committee that the Scottish Government was considering reducing the number of personnel in each regiment or battalion.[239]

117.  We are unconvinced that the emphasis on restoring Scottish regiments would address the fundamental needs of a Scottish army. It is not clear if the motivation to retain those units of the British Army associated with Scotland is simply to keep up numbers and maintain bases, or based on a more strategic assessment of what a separate Scottish State would either need or could afford. It is not clear how, or based on what criteria, a separate Scotland would define "Scottish raised and restored UK regiments" and how many of the disbanded or merged regiments would be restored.

118.  The debate around the future of the Scottish regiments is highly emotive. It is unsettling and unfair to create uncertainty among those who serve now, or have done in the past, in those parts of the British Army with a Scottish association

Choice and recruitment

119.  There was a general consensus in our evidence that no one in the British armed forces could be compelled to join a Scottish military. Sir Nick Harvey MP said:

Soldiers, sailors and airmen cannot simply be co-opted. They cannot suddenly be declared to be part of another country's Armed Forces. They would have to be given a choice[240]

The mechanism for how this would take place would need to be established. The decision as to who would be eligible to choose would be highly important to many people, not just in the traditional Scottish regiments, but all those currently based in Scotland, and Scots serving throughout the British Armed Forces in a myriad of roles. In considering what factors might influence this choice, Stuart Crawford said:

The pattern tends to be that when you are young and single, and full of vim and vigour, you want an adventure.[241]

He continued:

There is always a danger that, when you have a domestically-based armed force without any expeditionary function, it tends to become populated by people who, through personal circumstances, wish to be more geographically settled.[242]

120.  Professor Strachan said part of the appeal was that servicemen knew where they were in their current role in the British forces:

I think the much bigger question arises if you are somebody in mid-career—let's say, a colonel, senior warrant officer, sergeant or NCO in the Army. You have a fair degree of pension entitlement, reasonable career prospects, and you have done the hard graft of your military service. Which way would you go?[243]

And that size provided for a greater number of opportunities:

If you are serving and you are an ambitious soldier, you want the career opportunities that a large regiment creates. If you are in a single battalion, the opportunities narrow right down. [...] What concerns me in terms of the move to an independent Scotland is that not only would Scotland struggle to sustain a reasonable number of infantry battalions but many Scots, if they possibly could, would vote with their feet and go to the Army that will give them the career options and openings.[244]

121.  This would apply to Scots serving throughout the three services. Stuart Crawford accepted that a smaller Scottish navy would not necessarily provide the range of roles and specialist careers of the Royal Navy, and said:

there is no guarantee that Scots serving with the RN [Royal Navy] would transfer to the SN [Scottish Navy] en masse come independence so recruitment—as well as the correct mix of crew skills matched to ships—might well be an issue.[245]

122.  Not only would this choice have to be made by those currently serving, but the question "What are my career choices?" would apply to all future recruits. The British Army still attracts recruits from the Republic of Ireland and commonwealth countries.[246] Professor Strachan said:

You see it already with the Irish who serve in the British Army rather than the Irish Army, and it happened before 1707. That was exactly what the Scots did. They did not serve in the Scots Army; they served in the English establishment because that was where the opportunities were.[247]

Professor Strachan continued:

If you are a young man or woman in Scotland 20 years after independence and you decide to join the armed forces, it may well be that at that point you take a totally open decision. You say, "I'm a Scot and therefore I serve in the Scottish defence force", except that, if there is a hangover and Scots continue to pursue careers in the armed forces of the rest of the UK immediately after independence, I suspect that trend may continue, if it is legally possible to do so.[248]

It is not clear if the Scottish army would allow only Scottish citizens to undertake military service, or if choosing to serve in Scottish forces entitled the person to citizenship.[249] There would be a pull of a regiment associated with a certain recruiting area, and the link between generations of families and certain regiments. However, Dr Mileham thought the link with the past would not be straightforward. He saw the process involving the disbandment of regiments from the British Army, and a Scottish army having to restore the regiment.

If the new constitutional settlement happened, I think the Scots nationalists would probably want to re-raise in a new Scots Army a regiment that had been existence in the British Army and had been reduced to a battalion—(Royal Scots Borderers) or whatever it is. There would suddenly be a resurgence of the old name, but it would be a very different sort of regiment.[250]

123.  In evidence to the Defence Committee, Keith Brown said he did not see the scale of the British Army as a factor in offering opportunities to service personnel, and he felt it would be possible to offer comparatively better terms and conditions in the Scottish defence forces. He also said a Scottish army would offer a job for life and take better care of its veterans.[251] Similarly, Stuart Crawford suggested that the wages and terms of employment in a Scottish army could be better than the British Army, although this would add to the cost of an already manpower expensive military.

124.  Stuart Crawford noted a level of uncertainty about the number of military personnel who might choose to transfer to a Scottish defence force.[252] George Grant interviewed servicemen and found a clear desire for more information. This dilemma would have to be managed during the transitional period, but it is very difficult to know how long it would take for a Scottish military to be established and have an established career path to offer.[253]

125.  This would have to be seen in the context of current recruiting patterns. The Ministry of Defence does not maintain statistics according to whether individuals in the British Army, or the Navy or Air Force, consider themselves Scottish. They do, however, record statistics for each recruitment office. From 2007 to 2012, the percentage of total recruits to the British Army through Scottish recruitment offices has varied between 6% and 11%, to the Royal Navy between 6% and 8%, and to the Royal Air Force between 6% and 9%.[254] The population of Scotland is 8.5% of the UK.

126.  Professor Strachan said that there have been problems recruiting to fill the Scottish regiments since 1881.[255] The Royal Regiment of Scotland maintains one regular battalion more than it can fill with Scots,[256] and at the moment they are kept up to strength by Fijians.[257] A Scottish army, based on the information given, would appear to be dominated by infantry regiments at risk of being reduced in size, converted into another role, or possibly made into reserves. In contrast, the bulk of what a Scottish army would look like, engineers, logistics, signallers etc., is not given much attention. For example, Dr Mileham pointed out that Scotland would have to build up a group of officers for its new forces, and that:

If Scotland had to start all over again, it would be very difficult for it to build up quickly an officer corps that would be as good as the others, unless a large number came across, which is probably unlikely.[258]

127.  The British Army, Royal Navy and Royal Air Force are designed to operate across the globe. At present, it is unclear whether the Scottish defence force would be expected to operate beyond its own territory and territorial waters. The Independence White Paper should set out the range of career choices and opportunities that it expects its armed forces to offer, together with any variations in terms of conditions of employment which could be offered, and the anticipated timetable for having armed forces independent of the UK. It should set out the areas where it would anticipate a drawn out transition period or long term interdependence with the UK in the event of recruitment not reaching the required levels.

128.  Without more information we find it difficult to understand the nature of the offer that would persuade individuals to transfer from the British Army to any future Scottish army. Furthermore, this would apply not only to the wider British Army, but also throughout the Royal Air Force and the Royal Navy.

129.  If the UK Government did agree to the transfer of units to a separate Scotland, then it should not be assumed that all those serving in that unit would transfer with it. We call upon the UK Government to reiterate its position that no one would be forced to transfer to join a possible separate Scottish defence force. We call upon the Scottish Government, in their White Paper, to publicly accept the right of all serving UK Armed Forces personnel to choose whether to transfer from the UK Armed Forces to a possible Scottish defence force.


130.  The Ministry of Defence has a considerable footprint in Scotland.[259] The location of its major bases and facilities are due to the strategic needs of the UK as a whole. They also make an important social and economic contribution to the local economy. If Scotland left the UK, and we assume that a future Scottish military would want to use most of these facilities, then as physical assets they would probably be attributed to Scotland in the negotiations. A separate Scotland, when it considered its strategic needs and its available budget, would need to address the question of where it based its people and equipment. Such decisions would have considerable impact across all three services. The future of HMNB Clyde, known as Faslane, is a case in point.


131.  At present, Scotland has one major naval base: HMNB Clyde, commonly known as Faslane, although it also includes RNAD Coulport. It is one of only three major naval bases in the UK—alongside Devonport and Portsmouth. It is designed as a submarine base and is set to be the home base for all the Royal Navy submarines by 2017. We discussed the future of the nuclear fleet in our earlier report, Terminating Trident—Days or Decades?[260] If the submarines are forced to leave, then it will have implications for thousands of navy and civilian workers currently employed at Faslane, and the wider community which benefits from the naval base. Personnel numbers at Faslane are currently forecast to be around 8,200 by 2022, if Scotland remains in the UK.[261]

132.  Most of the evidence we received considered whether Scotland would need one or two navy bases; and if it had only one, whether it would be Faslane.[262] Mr Crawford's model includes two bases, Faslane and Rosyth,[263] to avoid having all its naval "eggs in one basket."[264] Rosyth, on the east coast, would be well placed to protect shipping lanes, fisheries, and the oil and gas fields in the North Sea, whereas Faslane, with vessels having to exit round the Mull of Kintyre, is arguably in the worst possible location for these roles. Rosyth also has facilities for ship maintenance and would be close to the seat of power in Edinburgh.

133.  Dr Phillips O'Brien, University of Glasgow, suggested Scotland might follow Denmark, which has two naval bases with slightly different responsibilities. One focuses on domestic security and patrols,[265] which in Scotland could be Rosyth, Inverness or Aberdeen on the east coast. The second Danish base is for international forces, which might be deployed as a contribution to NATO—which could be Faslane.[266] However, the Danish navy has a considerable navy of about 70 vessels, including seven frigates, and yet each base still only has 500-600 personnel each.[267] The SNP has not made clear how many ships they anticipate being in their navy, but the Stuart Crawford navy has only 20-25 vessels.[268] The numbers at Faslane could be increased by accommodating army personnel, but Dr O'Brien said that it would "probably be 2,000 to 3,000, not 6,500" if it was part of a two base navy.[269]

134.  Francis Tusa did not think it was likely that Scotland would have two naval bases, if it was "about three frigates and four fishery patrol vessels". He said most comparable countries, such as New Zealand, only had one naval base.[270] Norway has a single base at Haakonsvern, near Bergen. It is well-placed strategically, provides a single home for the whole Norwegian fleet—including five frigates and six submarines[271]—and is supplemented by the Norwegian naval command and naval officer training school. Even then, it only has a personnel component of approximately 4,000.[272]

135.  The SNP Defence Policy Update allocated Faslane as the Joint Forces Headquarters and also Scotland's "main conventional naval facility". (It did not mention Rosyth.) However, if Scotland followed the example of Norway, and only had a single base, it would be more sensible for it to be near the oil and gas installations facing the east coast. Professor Smith said "basing it all at Faslane would not seem sensible".[273]

136.  When asked what the proportion of the proposed 15,000 military personnel could be at Faslane, compared to now, Professor Chalmers said:

I cannot imagine that 5,000 of those 15,000 would all be based at Faslane, so the service number would come down significantly. In terms of the navy specifically, we are talking about a much smaller navy, probably of the order of a couple of thousand. If all of those 2,000 were based at Faslane and we had some headquarters people on top, you might have 3,000, but you certainly would not have the numbers you have now.[274]

The Scottish army could introduce army units into Faslane, but this would have implications for the SNP pledge that: "All current bases will be retained to accommodate units".[275] As Dr O'Brien said:

If you are going to have two bases—one east and one west—and 6,500 to mirror what Faslane has now, in a sense you have nothing anywhere else.[276]

George Grant pointed out that not only would the number of jobs at Faslane probably change, but also the type of job would change:

They have said that they would have their armed forces HQ there, but let's be quite clear about this: the sorts of people you need for your armed forces HQ will not be the same sorts of people you need for the maintenance of a fleet.[277]

137.  Faslane was designed and built as the base for the Royal Navy submarines. If the submarines are evicted, then it creates doubt as to the reasons for keeping Faslane open. We have not seen any evidence that suggested a separate Scotland would have a navy that required facilities on anything like the scale of that currently provided at Faslane.

138.  A separate Scottish State would have a choice, between either having two navy bases and accepting this would have a large reduction upon the personnel numbers at Faslane, or having one navy base, in what is not the ideal strategic location, but still having a considerable reduction in personnel numbers at Faslane.


139.  The Ministry of Defence is based in Whitehall providing the political headquarters for the armed forces, close to the seat of power and decision makers. There are other functions which are managed elsewhere, such as human resources and payroll.[278] Furthermore, each service has its own headquarters and other locations have particular responsibilities.[279] Stuart Crawford said it would be "very desirable" for the headquarters to be close to the seat of political power in Edinburgh, particularly when short-order decisions are taken in matters of national significance.[280] The SNP proposed their Joint Forces Headquarters to be at Faslane. Faslane is a naval base designed for submarines. Faslane does not have an airstrip and the geography does not allow for one,[281] which would make it awkward for the air force. It would have command and control equipment.[282]

140.  A separate Scottish military would have to recreate a headquarters and institutional structure which replicates that currently provided by the Ministry of Defence and its agencies. The priority, if there would be a single Joint Forces Headquarters, would be for it to be near the seat of power in Edinburgh. If there was to be only one headquarters, then Faslane would be geographically unsuitable.

141.  If Faslane was chosen as a Joint Forces Headquarters, then it would be a short term measure based on a need to have a functioning military headquarters as soon as possible and to delay the inevitable loss of personnel and jobs as a result of the Royal Navy submarine fleet leaving.


142.  The British Army has several bases in Scotland.[283] When the SDSR 2010 and the Basing Review 2013 have been fully implemented, the British Army presence in Scotland by 2020 is anticipated to be near 4,000 soldiers accommodated at six sites. Any further increase in numbers would require investment and alterations to other property. Stuart Crawford recognised that the existing accommodation would not be sufficient for the forces he proposed, and further locations would need to identified and modernised, with the necessary investment.[284] It is difficult to understand the need for army accommodation without more information on the number of full-time personnel in the Scottish army.

143.  There are unanswered questions around the balance of regular and reserve forces in a separate Scottish army. This would have an implication for the number of barracks which needed to be provided for full time army personnel in a separate Scotland. The Scottish Government should make clear which bases it would anticipate using to accommodate the raised and restored Scottish regiments.

144.  If army units were introduced to a Joint Forces Headquarters at Faslane then this would reduce the proportion of Scottish army personnel accommodated at the current army bases in Dreghorn Barracks, Glencorse Barracks, Fort George, and Redford Barracks.


145.  The RAF in Scotland had two bases; RAF Lossiemouth, home to three squadrons of Tornado fast jet aircraft, a search and rescue helicopter unit, and an RAF Regiment field squadron; and RAF Leuchars, currently home to one squadron of Typhoon fast jet aircraft, an RAF Regiment field squadron and a military mountain rescue team. The Scotland Analysis: Defence paper said "Fast jets are expensive, both in terms of equipment, maintenance and infrastructure costs and the numbers of personnel required to support them."[285] The total cost for running RAF Leuchars in 2010-11 was £62 million a year.[286] The Ministry of Defence is investing £85 million to develop RAF Lossiemouth in anticipation of the QRA force being moved there from RAF Leuchars in 2014.[287] After the RAF leave, Leuchars is being converted into an army base in anticipation of the return of the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards from Germany in 2015.[288]

146.  The SNP defence motion said their air force would operate from two bases: Lossiemouth and Leuchars.[289] However, Keith Brown MSP told the Defence Committee: "As things stand, we believe that the one air base would be sufficient for Scotland's needs."[290] He implied Scotland would be limited to the number of air bases which it inherited.[291] Keith Brown said that bringing an air base or army base back into use "presents different logistical challenges."[292]


147.  The SNP Security and Defence Policy Update suggested that there could be "shared conventional basing, training and logistics arrangements", and that included "sharing conventional military capabilities, setting priorities and better coordinating efforts providing economic synergies, job stability and taxpayer value for money."[293] It may be that the UK and a separate Scotland could co-operate.[294] Sir Nick Harvey said the extent to which the two militaries could possibly work together would depend on Scotland's ambition:

At the moment the UK forces have global interests and ambitions. We are geared up for expeditionary warfare. I have no idea whether a future Scottish force would have that sort of ambition or a far more limited ambition. Therefore, the scope for working with them is hard to determine.[295]

148.  Shared defence was even less likely. As we raised earlier, there is a link between foreign policy and defence policy and, as Alastair Carmichael MP said "if you are to buy in to somebody else's defence policy, then inevitably you buy in at the same time to the foreign policy." Professor Chalmers pointed out that while many States rely on each other for protection, "not a single one of the 193 members of the UN shares its armed forces with another".[296] Sir Nick Harvey, former Minister of State for the Armed Forces, said that there was no example of joint defences among sovereign UN member states to be found anywhere in the world.[297] On the idea of joint basing, Sir Nick Harvey said:

The difficulty of having joint bases, if you have two different Governments pursuing two different foreign policies and two different defence policies, is what would happen in the event that there was a divergence of view, for example, about deploying aircraft or naval assets in this joint base. Would the Government that did not wish to get involved start trying to frustrate the preparations of the one that did wish to? This is intrinsically a very difficult proposition.[298]

149.  However, Scotland could allow the air force of another country to operate out of a sovereign base in Scotland. Sir Nick Harvey agreed that:

If a future Scottish Government were to make an assessment that they felt that Scotland faced a similar aerial threat from the north that the residual UK believed it did and were to negotiate with the residual UK that it provided air cover for Scotland, and as part of that arrangement some decision was made to base part of that capability somewhere in Scotland, with the UK operating it in a sovereign sense but providing some cover to Scotland, I could imagine an arrangement of that sort being negotiated,[299]

George Grant said that in such a scenario, Scotland would be "ceding control of their airspace to a foreign country." And that:

The UK would not automatically [be] on call to do all the things that a Scottish Government would want their air force to do. That air force would be reacting to threats to the UK's security and operating in its interests, not at the beck and call of a foreign Government.[300]

150.  It was suggested that this could be done under the auspices of NATO. Stuart Crawford said:

If I was advising the Government of an independent Scotland, of whatever political hue, I would probably be suggesting that at least they make the offer of establishing a NATO air base in Lossiemouth in Scotland, which would seem to make a lot of sense from both a defence and economic point of view.[301]

The First Minister has said he would allow a NATO base on Scottish soil.[302] However, similar to the issues around a UK sovereign base, it is not clear whether Scotland could stop NATO using it in operations that the Scottish Government did not support.[303] Similarly, there are serious doubts as to whether a Scottish Government could stipulate what types of weapons were located at or transited through such a base.

151.  While it is clear that an independent country would have responsibility in areas such as where to base its own air force, it is not clear if the people of Scotland are being given enough information so they can assess whether they would feel safe in a separate Scotland. It is difficult to draw sensible conclusions on air force basing in a separate Scotland without more information on the foreign policy of a separate Scotland, if it would operate its own air policing, and if Scotland would be in NATO. The Scottish Government must provide answers to these questions as a matter of urgency.

Special Forces and Royal Marines

152.  Scotland would need some sort of elite troops to be able to react to acts of terrorism, such as an attack upon the oil and gas infrastructure.[304] Stuart Crawford used broad numbers, originally proposed by Clive Fairweather, former officer in the Kings Own Borderers and the SAS, for Scotland to recruit, train and maintain one squadron of at least 75 special forces personnel.[305] The SNP motion noted that a separate Scotland would want "Special Forces and Royal Marines" with "responsibility for offshore protection".[306]

153.  There are over 1,000 Royal Marines currently based in Scotland: 43 Commando Fleet Protection Group at Faslane[307] and 45 Commando at RM Condor, Arbroath.[308] The SAS and SBS are based in Hereford and Devon, both in England. The Government of a separate Scotland could not compel anyone already serving in the current SAS, SBS or Royal Marines to join a Scottish defence force, no matter where they were based.

154.  If Scotland focussed on territorial defence, then the opportunities and challenges for someone serving in the potential Scottish special forces would be different to that offered by the UK. Special Forces need large pools of regular troops to recruit sufficiently qualified people.[309] Stuart Crawford accepted that recruitment would be "challenging" and that he anticipated it would take "three years or possibly more" after independence to establish special forces.[310]

155.  The Scottish Government should outline, in the White Paper, its position on the Royal Marines currently stationed in Scotland, and acknowledge the very strong likelihood that if Scotland left the UK then the Royal Marines would leave Scotland. The base at RM Condor, Arbroath would be vacated.

156.  The Scottish Government should make clear what their strategy would be if recruitment to Scottish special forces or marines proved difficult, and they were faced with a vulnerability after Independence Day.


157.  The UK carries out different types of military training in different parts of the UK. All British infantry basic training takes place at Catterick in England. Officer training for the British Army takes place at Sandhurst. The Royal Naval College at Dartmouth trains all the Royal Navy officers. RAF College Cranwell trains all RAF officers, airmen and aircrew, and has responsibility for all RAF recruiting and initial training.[311] Professor Strachan said training was an example of how the British military was integrated across the UK:

When we see Stuart Crawford's analysis we tend to think of this in terms of assets and small units, but I am thinking of the collective capabilities that the UK armed forces have: the Defence Academy, the individual service establishments in terms of training and education, and, above all, intelligence. Where would Scotland have those?[312]

158.  It is cost effective for a large military with a wide range of capabilities to invest in specialist training facilities. Smaller countries often outsource where possible—the Dutch and Norwegians still send their submariners to Portsmouth because it is not economic for them to replicate those facilities.[313] The British also have arrangements for training in different climates and terrain in Canada, Norway, Kenya and Brunei. The Secretary of State for Defence told the Defence Committee that a separate Scotland could not presume access to these facilities.[314]

159.  Training facilities would need to be provided in a separate Scottish State. It would be unusual if Scotland did not provide at least basic training for its own army, navy and air force in Scotland. The Scottish Government could request to continue using facilities in the UK during the transition period. Officer training would need to be provided as well as training for specialist roles within its forces. The Scottish Government must clarify whether their proposed budget of £2.5 billion includes the transitional costs of developing basic, specialist and officer training facilities.


135   Crawford and Marsh, A' The Blue Bonnets, RUSI, October 2012 Back

136   SNP Foreign, Security and Defence Policy Update, October 2012  Back

137   Q 215 Back

138   Q 162 Back

139   HC 139-II, Ev 303. There are also 4,690 MoD civilians in Scotland. By 2015, the UK is forecast to have a full-time Army of 95,000, RAF of 33,000, and Navy of 30,000-or 155,000 in total. Back

140   Q 2375 Back

141   Q 2389 Back

142   Q 158 Back

143   Q 157 Back

144   Q 157 Back

145   Crawford & Marsh, A' The Blue Bonnets, RUSI, October 2012 Back

146   Q 511 Back

147   Crawford & Marsh, A' The Blue Bonnets, RUSI, October 2012 Back

148   SNP Foreign, Security and Defence Policy Update, October 2012 Back

149   Type 26 Global Combat Ship (GCS) Programme, Back

150   Q 2270 Back

151   Qq 2276-2278 Back

152   Q 2268 Back

153   Q 2274 Back

154   Q 1443 Back

155   Q 2274 Back

156   Jack Hawthorn, Some Thoughts on an Independent Scottish Defence Force, 1997 Back

157   Q 272, Q 2443, Crawford and Marsh, A' The Blue Bonnets, RUSI, October 2012 page 8 Back

158   Scottish Global Forum, Securing the Nation Defending an independent Scotland, pages 26-27 Back

159   The Referendum on Separation for Scotland, Session 2012-13, HC 139-II, Ev 313 Back

160   Eighth Report of Session 2012-13, Separation Shuts Shipyards, HC 892  Back

161  Back

162   HC 139-II, Ev 297 Back

163   HC 139-II, Ev 303 Back

164   HC 139-II, Ev 297. The Norwegian figure includes civilian and military personnel Back

165   RAF 'offer to scrap £3.5 billion Nimrods, Daily Telegraph 20 July 2010 Back

166   George Grant, In Scotland's defence? 2013, page 54 Back

167   Crawford and Marsh, A' the Blue Bonnets, RUSI, October 2012 Back

168   SNP Foreign, Security and Defence Policy Update, October 2012 Back

169   George Grant, In Scotland's Defence? 2013, page 54 Back

170   Oral evidence before the Defence Committee, 17 November 2010, HC 600-i, Q 39 Back

171   Q 637; Q 225. Back

172   The Scotland Institute, Defence and Security In An Independent Scotland, June 2013 Back

173   Q Qq 3928-3929 Back

174   Ev 308, HC 139-II Back

175   HC Deb 31 January 2012, col 574W Back

176   HC Deb 13 December 2010, Col 457W. The airspace covered by NATO Air Policing Area 1 is UK, Norwegian, Icelandic, Danish and international airspace Back

177   HC Deb 12 December 2011, col 473W Back

178   SNP Foreign, Security and Defence Policy Update  Back

179   Oral evidence before the Defence Committee, 2 July 2013, Q 318 Back

180   Q 621 Back

181   Q 621 Back

182   George Grant, 2013, In Scotland's Defence? An Assessment of SNP Defence Strategy, pp 51-53 Back

183   Qq 2479-2480 Supersonic is faster than the speed of sound or 768 miles per hour. Subsonic is not. Back

184   Qq 2481 - Q 2483, Q 2476 Back

185   Defence Committee, 2 July 2013, Qq 319-320 Back

186   Qq 2185-2188 Back

187   Qq 2465-2466 Back

188   Oral evidence before the Defence Committee, 2 July 2013, Q 327. Scottish Global Forum, Securing the Nation, Defending an independent Scotland, 12 November 2013 Back

189   The Military Balance, 2012  Back

190   Q 663 Back

191   Q 169. Crawford and Marsh, A' the Blue Bonnets, RUSI, October 2012, page 11 Back

192   Q 2190. See also Q 2192 Back

193   HL Deb 25 Nov 2010: Column WA368, and HC Deb 3 Mar 2011: Column 562W. The figures include servicing, fuel, crew costs, training costs, cost of capital charge, depreciation and amortisation. The Typhoon cost per flying hour reflected small numbers in service and was expected to reduce as the fleet increased in number. Back

194   Q 2184 Back

195   Royal Air Force Brize Norton is the home of fixed-wing Strategic and Tactical Air Transport which, in addition, incorporates RAF's Air-to-Air Refuelling capability. Back

196   Q 2188 Back

197   Q 2478 Back

198   Qq 652-660 Back

199   Q 2194 Back

200   Q 2193 Back

201   The Hercules C-130 can carry 120 personnel and can travel as far as 3,500 miles  Back

202   Q 2161 Back

203   Malcolm Chalmers, The End of an Auld Sang, RUSI, April 2012  Back

204   HC 139-II Ev 305 Back

205   SNP Foreign, Security and Defence Policy Update  Back

206   Oral evidence before the Defence Committee, 2 July 2013, Qq 278-279 Back

207   Crawford and Marsh, A' the Blue Bonnets, RUSI, October page 27 Back

208   Q 454 See also Crawford and Marsh, A' the Blue Bonnets, RUSI, October 2012 Back

209   Q 191 Back

210   Q 2157 Back

211   It's time we knew the cost of the SNP's defence policy, Daily Telegraph, 21 January 2013 Back

212   Q 158 Back

213 Back

214   Oral evidence before the Defence Committee, 2 July 2013, Q 285 Back

215   SNP Foreign, Security and Defence Policy  Back

216   Oral evidence before the Defence Committee, 2 July 2013, Q 332 Back

217   HC Deb 27 March 2012 c1051W. The 40th Regiment Royal Artillery (Lowland Gunners) has since disbanded and the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders have been downsized to Company strength. Back

218   Q 3737, Q 3744. Iain Gordon, Bloodline, The Origin and Development of the Regular Formations of the British Army Back

219   Crawford and Marsh, A' the Blue Bonnets, RUSI, October 2012 Back

220   Qq 3763-3767 Back

221   Independent Scottish defence force plans spark political row, Guardian, 20 January 2012; Former Army officers ridicule SNP plans to transfer famous regiments into 'Alex Salmond's home guard', Daily Telegraph, 22 January 2012; Briefing: Separation anxiety, Jane's Defence Weekly, 14 June 2012  Back

222   Philip Hammond MP, speech in Edinburgh 14 March 2013  Back

223   The full list of 4th Mech Bde: The Queen's Royal Lancers and The Royal Dragon Guards; 1st Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland, 1st Battalion Royal Scots Guards, 1st Battalion The Duke of Lancaster's Regiment, 1st Battalion The Mercian Regiment (Cheshire), 1st Battalion The Royal Gurkha Rifles; 204 Signal Squadron, 4th Regiment Royal Artillery, 12 Logistic Support Regiment and 150 Provost Company RMP. . The Scotland Analysis Defence paper includes a similar example of the variety of units deployed to Afghanistan in October 2013, Cm 8174 Annex A Back

224   Q 3747 Back

225   Qq 3756-3757 Back

226   Q 3758 Back

227   Qq 2222- 2230  Back

228   Q 3757 Back

229   Q 3762 Back

230   The Scotland Institute, Defence and Security in an Independent Scotland, June 2013, pages 31-32 Back

231   Q 159 Back

232   Q 191 Back

233   Q 2158 Back

234   SNP Foreign, Security and Defence Policy Update, October 2012  Back

235   Crawford and Marsh, A' the Blue Bonnets, RUSI, October 2012, page 27  Back

236   Q 158 Norway has conscription Q 525 Back

237   Q 213. See also Q 192 Back

238   Q 536 Back

239   Oral evidence before the Defence Committee, 2 July 2013, Q 332 Back

240   Q 434 Back

241   Q 530 Back

242   Q 532 Back

243   Q 181 Back

244   Q 160 Back

245   Crawford and Marsh, A' the Blue Bonnets, RUSI, October 2012 Back

246   Scotland Analysis: Defence, Cm 8174 Back

247   Q 160 Back

248   Q 181 Back

249   Q 186 Back

250   Q 3753 Back

251   Oral evidence before the Defence Committee, 2 July 2013, Qq287-289 Back

252   Qq 527-529 Back

253   Q 181 Back

254   Ministry of Defence, FOI Reference 13-02-2012-121523-005, 23 February 2012. Figures for regular service recruits. Royal Air Force figures are by calendar year. Army and Navy by financial year. 2011-12 Royal Navy figures up to 31 Jan. Army Figures up to 20 Feb. Air Force up to 17 Feb Back

255   Q 160 Back

256   Q 525. HC Deb 14 June 2012, col 576W Back

257   Q 160 Back

258   Q 3769 Back

259   Scotland Analysis : Defence, Cm 8174  Back

260   Fourth Report of 2012-13, HC 676 Back

261   Ev 311-312, HC 139-II Back

262   For example, see Q 1420 Back

263   Rosyth was a Royal Navy base until 1996 Back

264   Q 2448 Back

265   Q 1428 Back

266   Q 1429 Back

267   Ev 298, HC 139-II  Back

268   Q 558. A' The Blue Bonnets, RUSI, 2012. Also Defence Management, 17 October 2012 Back

269   Q 1430 Back

270   Q 283 Back

271   Ev 297, HC 139-II . See also  Back

272   Qq 1426-1430. And Ev 298, HC 139-II Back

273   Q 2284 Back

274   Q 2283 Back

275   SNP Foreign, Security and Defence Policy Update, October 2012 Back

276   Q 1426 Back

277   Q 3546 Back

278   For example, the British Army service records at Kentigern House in Glasgow Back

279   The Royal Navy headquarters is at Whale Island, Portsmouth; the British Army headquarters is at Andover; and the Royal Air Force headquarters is at RAF High Wycombe. Back

280   Q 2396, Qq 2398-2399 Back

281   Ev 298, Q 1418 Back

282   Q 2394, Q 2398 Back

283   Dreghorn Barracks, Edinburgh, Glencorse Barracks, Penicuik, Fort George, Inverness, and Redford Barracks, Edinburgh, each currently housing a battalion. There are other buildings in Scotland for administrative and ceremonial purposes. Back

284   RUSI, Crawford and Marsh, A' the Blue Bonnets, RUSI, October 2012, October 2012 Back

285   Scotland Analysis: Defence, Cm 8174, para 1.65 Back

286   HC Deb 7 Jan 2013, Col 43W Back

287   Scotland Analysis Defence, Cm 8174, para 1.88 Back

288 Back

289   SNP Foreign, Security and Defence Policy Update, October 2012 Back

290   Oral evidence before the Defence Committee, 2 July 2013 Q 323 Back

291   Oral evidence before the Defence Committee, 2 July 2013 Q 324 Back

292   Oral evidence before the Defence Committee, 2 July 2013 Q 325 Back

293   SNP Foreign, Security and Defence Policy Update  Back

294   Dr Colin Fleming, A Scottish Defence Model, 11 February 2013  Back

295   Q 353 Back

296   Malcolm Chalmers, The End of an Auld Sang, RUSI, April 2012 Back

297   Q 365 Back

298   Q 372 Back

299   Q 372 Back

300   Qq 3543-3544 Back

301   Q 2467 Back

302   Scotland as a Good Global Citizen, Address to the Brookings Institution, Washington DC, 9 April 2013 Back

303   SNP split over post independence US base plan, The Scotsman, 12 April 2013 Back

304   Q 2265 Back

305   Crawford and Marsh, A' the Blue Bonnets, RUSI, October 2012 Back

306   SNP Defence Policy Update, October 2012 Back

307 Back

308   HC 139-II, Ev 303. See Back

309   Q 2263 Back

310   Crawford and Marsh, A' the Blue Bonnets, RUSI, October 2012 Back

311 Back

312   Q 181 Back

313   Q 280 Back

314   Oral evidence before the Defence Committee, 2 July 2013 Qq391-392 Back

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Prepared 23 November 2013