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Newly refurbished room converted from 4 person room to single bedroom at Keogh Barracks (Crown copyright)
The Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO) has completed the first phase of its £50 million redevelopment of Keogh Barracks, Ash Vale, for the arrival of 4 Armoured Medical Regiment (4AMR).
The 350 medics officially took over the site today (23 June), relocating from nearby Normandy Barracks, also part of the Aldershot garrison.
Working with the Army and industry partners Interserve and PriDE, the £7.5 million first phase of the three-year project included converting shared rooms into nearly 180 single bedrooms, creating laundry facilities, common rooms and upgrading the officers’ mess.
Further refurbishment and new buildings will follow as the barracks will also become home to 22 Field Hospital and Ministry of Defence Hospital Unit (Frimley Park) from 2016. This will provide fit-for-purpose accommodation and allow the three units to train and work in a coordinated way, enhancing military medical capability.
This move is part of the Army Basing Programme which will provide the facilities the Army needs to live, work and train as it rebases across the UK, returns from Germany and restructures to its future Army 2020 formations.
DIO Army Basing Programme Director, Richard McKinney, said: “Under the Army Basing Programme, more than 5,000 troops and their families will return to the UK from Germany this year and nearly 20 military units will reorganise or relocate within the UK. The redevelopment works at Keogh Barracks will provide the medics with fit-for-purpose facilities. We hope they enjoy their new home.”
Major Eddie Rae, Project Manager for 4AMR, said: “Keogh Barracks is considered the spiritual home of the Army Medical Services, many currently serving officers and soldiers started their military medical careers here. To see the barracks transform to a field Army facility is refreshing. There’s still more work scheduled for the site, but these new bedrooms and facilities are excellent. We’re looking forward to continuing to work with the DIO to ensure the future redevelopment of the barracks further meets the needs of the soldiers and the regiment and builds on military medical capability well into the future.”
Private Kathryn Beatt, 4AMR chef, added: “The facilities are good and the rooms are quite big. I’m excited about moving here.”
DIO Project Manager, George Liu, added: “In just seven months we’ve essentially gone from a blank piece of paper to handing over these quality rooms to budget and time. This shows what can be achieved in a truly collaborative environment. We’ve also commenced procurement of the next phase of works which will further improve the living and working environment at Keogh Barracks.”
4 Rifles will backfill the Aldershot barracks 4AMR have vacated, moving from Salisbury Plain this summer. This will enable 5 Rifles to move to Salisbury Plain from Germany next year.