City Council Leader writes to Minister over future of Barracks

Press Release: 07/07/2016

The Leader of Winchester City Council has told the Government that the Council will resist any attempt to sell off the Sir John Moore Barracks site for housing.

Cllr Stephen Godfrey this week wrote to Defence Minister, Mark Lancaster MP, in advance of an announcement about possible closure of the Barracks at Flowerdown in Winchester as part of a wider review.

Cllr Godfrey said:

Should a decision be made to vacate the Sir John Moore Barracks, the Defence Infrastructure Organisation [the body conducting the review] should be aware that Winchester City Council will resist any proposal to develop the barracks primarily for housing. I would expect the local community would also voice significant concerns about such a proposal. However, we would be very supportive of any appropriate proposal that conforms with our Local Plan. Winchester City Council is very keen to exploit opportunities for use of any redundant public land, particularly to retain local employment.

The letter explains that planning policy does not support housing on the Flowerdown site and that the Local Plan already addresses the district’s housing needs.

Cllr Godfrey asked Ministers to consider retaining the Sir John Moore Barracks as a defence establishment because of its modern facilities, the city’s long-standing military connections and the contribution military personnel make to the vibrancy and economy of Winchester.