170 sailors face losing job as MoD begins second wave of redundancies
Fewer redundancies have been issued in the Navy in the latest round of job cuts than previously forecast.
Up to 300 sailors faced being axed in the second wave of forces sackings – but this has been reduced to 170 due to recruitment curbs and granting fewer extensions of service.
But of these 50, or 29%, are being forced to quit.
They are among the 3,800 service redundancies confirmed yesterday in the second tranche, with the bulk coming from the Army, which is facing the biggest overall cuts in manpower.
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The RAF is losing 730 personnel, while 2,900 soldiers are receiving notices. Of these two services 29% and 28% are not volunteers.
For the Navy and RAF these should be the final reductions.
The Ministry of Defence added it had done everything it could to avoid compulsory redundancies, pointing out the rate had fallen since the last wave, from 38%.
Volunteers will leave by December 11, with compulsory redundancies taking effect in a year's time.
Details about the location of personnel being made redundant has not yet been published.
But in the first round, one-third of the first 1,000 naval redundancies were issued in the Westcountry, including at RNAS Yeovilton in Somerset, Devonport in Plymouth, and RNAS Culdrose near Helston, West Cornwall.
The MoD is in the process of cutting 25,000 armed forces personnel and 29,000 civilian staff by 2015 in the biggest round of cuts to the military since the end of the Cold War.
Defence Secretary Philip Hammond said: "Of course I regret that it has been necessary to make redundancies to deliver our plans for reducing the size of the armed forces.
"We inherited a multibillion-pound black hole in the defence budget which had meant the previous government had not been able to afford to properly equip our troops with the kit they needed. We've now brought the defence budget back into balance for the first time in a generation."
Alison Seabeck, Plymouth Labour MP and Shadow Defence Minister, said: "We knew these redundancies were coming but nonetheless it shouldn't detract from the potential problems that some of these service personnel and their families will face given the problems there are in the wider economy."