in Defence

Wildcat work to stay in UK

Posted 26 July 2017 · Add Comment

Minister for Defence Procurement Harriett Baldwin has announcesd that work on the AW159 Wildcat helicopter, produced by Leonardo Helicopters in Yeovil, will continue in the UK



Above: Minister Harriett Baldwin has announced that Wildcat fabrication will stay in the UK.
Crown Copyright


Options had been considered to relocate the fabrication work for future AW159 helicopters orders – the export version of the Wildcat helicopters already in service with the British Army and Royal Navy – overseas.

After careful joint analysis with the Ministry of Defence, Leonardo Helicopters in Yeovil has confirmed that it will carry out all future fabrication for the AW159 helicopter in the UK, with much of this work being undertaken at its Somerset facility – an agreement that will sustain 40 highly skilled jobs across the UK-based supply chain.

Wildcat is a highly versatile aircraft, capable of a wide a range of tasks over land and sea. The Royal Navy’s maritime Wildcat forms the core of the UK’s Frigate and Destroyer aviation capability and performs tasks including Anti-Surface and Submarine Warfare, force protection, transport and the vital information, surveillance, target acquisition, and reconnaissance (ISTAR) role. Similarly, the Army variant performs reconnaissance, command and control, force protection, and transport roles in a wide variety of environments.

Minister for Defence Procurement Harriett Baldwin said: "I am delighted that a solution for UK-based fabrication for the AW159 helicopter has been identified between the MOD and Leonardo Helicopters. An agreement that secures Yeovil as the home of AW159 and Wildcat production and maintenance in the UK.

"This work has not only helped sustain 40 of highly skilled jobs within the UK, but will act as a positive boost for the company and, through improved cost-effectiveness, their export customers. I would also like to pay tribute to Marcus Fysh MP, who has worked tirelessly to secure this great result."

Over a decade ago the MoD bought, as part of the 2006 Wildcat (then Future Lynx) demonstration and manufacturing contract, a number of specialised jigs and tooling for the fabrication of the AW159 Wildcat Helicopters. These essential parts are used to ensure airframe alignment, mould, patterns and manufacturing tools and gauges. These will now be used by Leonardo to carry out the fabrication work in the UK.

The MoD’s continuing commitment to the Wildcat was also highlighted earlier this year, when a £271 million five year deal was signed to deliver a range of support and training services for the UK’s entire fleet of 62 AW159 Wildcat helicopters, securing 500 jobs at Leonardo’s facilities in Yeovil and Royal Naval Air Station Yeovilton.

 

* required field

Post a comment

Other Stories
Advertisement
Latest News

LOCKEN to secure Renvico wind farms

LOCKEN has been selected by Renvico to secure its windfarms with electronic keys which combine innovative electronics with a mechanical component.

A330neo embarks on function & reliability tests

The A330neo, Airbusí newest widebody aircraft, has embarked on a worldwide tour to demonstrate its readiness for airline operations.

CILT concerned for UK's post-Brexit freight operations

The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) is encouraging operators, customers and the Government to take steps now to ensure the profession is prepared for the effects of - and harnesses the opportunities of - leaving

European Eurofighters celebrate Finnish Air Force's 100th anniversary

Eurofighter Typhoon aircraft from across Europe were on display as part of a major celebration to mark the 100th anniversary of the Finnish Air Force.

Gatwick reports busiest-ever May

Last month saw London Gatwick experience the busiest May in its history, as 4.1 million passengers travelled through the airport.

Simoco opens dedicated Heathrow NOC

Derby-headquartered Simoco Wireless Solutions has opened a Network Operations Centre (NOC) at Heathrow, which includes a 24/7 monitoring, troubleshooting and maintenance service for radio networks.

Air & Ground SK1704230718
See us at
AdvancedEngin BT1406011118SMIFAVSBT151118DVD18BT3105200918SMI GMSCBT3005081118FIL18 BT111017220718