Letter: Geoffrey Bailey: If Trident were not built, the resources that would have been spent on it would still be there. It would, of course, be soul destroying simply to continue paying those who had lost their jobs: other work should be found. After the second world war, redundant armament/aircraft factories made huge numbers of much-needed houses – “prefabs” – which, in spite of initial criticism, were very successful and lasted much longer than intended. In the present state of housing in the UK, something like that is needed: the building industry seems unable to cope.
Guardian 23rd July 2016 read more »
Gentle pips emit from a red speaker at the entrance to the Neptune nuclear reactor test centre with the frequency of a dripping tap. The sound is soothing to staff inside the drab 1960s building, which sits behind a 12ft electric fence on an industrial estate in Derby. You want to worry if the pips stop, said Martin Smith, a stern Rolls-Royce veteran of 25 years who runs the test reactor facility. “Then we know there’s a problem.” Neptune, which resembles a university laboratory inside a large concrete box, sits at the heart of one of Britain’s most secretive, expensive and important defence initiatives: the nuclear submarine programme. The reactor core for every British submarine is built at Rolls-Royce’s Raynesway site. The reactors are then assessed at Neptune before they are sealed within the vessels they will power for decades. Last week MPs secured Raynesway’s future when they voted overwhelmingly to renew the Trident nuclear deterrent. Four submarines, armed with nuclear missiles, will be built under the Successor programme. It will cost up to £41bn, said the Ministry of Defence. Other estimates put the cost nearer to £170bn including development and the submarines’ 30-year lifespan.
Times 24th July 2016 read more »