Negotiations start on future of RAF Halton

RAF Halton will be closed by the end of 2022 under cost-cutting plans
RAF Halton will be closed by the end of 2022 under cost-cutting plans

Negotiations on the future of the RAF Halton site are underway, according to a councillor.

District council cabinet member for economic development delivery, Steve Bowles, said work was taking place to try to come up with ‘sustainable development’ for the site.

The base will be closed by the end of 2022 after the Ministry of Defence announced plans last year to reduce its running costs by £140 million over ten years.

The news of the closure of the entire base followed an earlier announcement by the MoD that the Volunteer Gliding Centre would be shut as part of its Better Estate Strategy.

Cllr Bowles said: “All the stakeholders and key parties are currently working to deliver something that suits the community’s needs.

“I think it is likely there will be some houses but the preference is for a mixed use development rather than a housing estate.”

Cllr Bowles said he had heard that there was interest in using some of the buildings on the site for filming.

He said: “I understand that Pinewood Studios have had a nose around and that a West End theatre group were interested as well but obviously nothing is definite.”

Cllr Bowles added he felt the site should contain some housing.

He said: “I feel there should be some houses and I know the parish council accept that.

“We just have to make sure the infrastructure is there whatever happens – which means more than just roads, it means school places and hospital services etc.”

When the MoD announced the closure of the RAF base they did state that ‘the future location of the lodger units on the airfield sites was subject to further work’.

Mr Bowles added he had heard no news regarding the future location of the lodger units.