The UK Armed Forces Minister, Adam Ingram, has given approval to the Defence Aviation Repair Agency (DARA) to proceed with the construction of a £77million repair and maintenance facility at the Agency’s headquarters base in St Athan, South Wales.
The facility will be constructed within a 100-acre site on the existing RAF St Athan base. The new facility will have the capacity to house 48 jet aircraft and will be capable of adapting capacity to suit the needs of customers.
Mr Ingram said; ‘DARA plays a crucial role in delivering support to our Armed Forces. It is clear that, if the Agency is to bid effectively and successfully for future aircraft repair and maintenance work, then it must have facilities that will enable it to be competitive in the international market place.
‘The new facility is designed to the highest standards to help DARA improve quality and productivity. This substantial investment is a major vote of confidence in DARA and our defence capability in Wales.’
The new DARA development will also be the focus for wider plans by the Welsh Development Agency (WDA) to create an Aviation Centre of Excellence at St Athan.
Construction of the facility will secure 3,000 Dara jobs in Wales and approximately 1,000 jobs in Fleetlands, Hampshire, Almondbank, Perthshire and Sealand in Flintshire.