§ Lord Stoddart of Swindon
asked Her Majesty's Government:
What consideration they have given to the likely adverse effects of the closure and running down of defence establishments in Wiltshire on local employment and on the business, economic and social 72WA life of the communities affected; and what measures they will take to minimise those effects.
§ Lord Inglewood
The Government have a broad range of programmes which address the effects of the rundown of the defence industry. Supporting these programmes, the Government Office South West (GOSW), working with parent departments in Whitehall, is concerned to advance the economic competitiveness and prosperity of the region and within this will take account of the effects of the defence rundown. GOSW is liaising closely with Training and Enterprise Councils (TECs), local authorities and other bodies in Wiltshire to ensure its work is directed to the maximum benefit to the local situation.
The major thrust of government's response to the defence cutbacks has been the emphasis on the establishment of partnerships to take advantage of the funding made available via initiatives such as KONVER, designed to help regions become less dependent on defence related industries.
The Employment Service and TECs also have a range of help under their mainstream provision which can be made available in defence redundancy situations.