Barracks ‘worse than the frontline’

Image copyright Getty Pictures
Image caption The Keogh Barracks are located on the Surrey/Hampshire border

Soldiers in a British Army barracks in Aldershot say they have been living without dependable hot water and heating for almost per year.

One jewellry told the BBC that problems at Keogh Barracks are “worse than those on the frontline”.

It highlights a broader problem as the Ministry of Protection struggles to find the money to maintain the vast estate.

Yesterday a defence minister accepted “we need more money” to undertake maintenance and repairs.

More than a hundred soldiers reside in Keogh Barracks on the Aldershot bottom.

The BBC has seen letters sent simply by some to their commanding officer going on about the conditions they’ve had to withstand.

One states “I’ve never had a hot bath in my block”. Another says “the block and rooms are freezing”, while several warn of “low morale”.

The particular BBC has also spoken to 2 soldiers who live on the base plus came to us to voice their own frustrations. We have used aliases to guard their identity.

‘All-round depressing’

Susan told us she’d offered on the frontline in Afghanistan residing in a tent and she said also that has “better facilities to wash plus shower” than her barracks within Aldershot.

“Being back in the UK”, she said, “with no hot water and heating is really a disgrace”.

Jeremy says: “Prisoners get treated much better than us and we’ve committed simply no crime”. She says hot water plus heating should be “a basic individual right”.

Leslie says she has to maintain vehicles “working with oils and lubricants” however is often expected to clean herself inside a cold shower.

“I just feel grotty”, the lady told us.

Janet says not being able to wash correctly is “unhygienic and all-round depressing”.

Image copyright laws Alan Hunt – geograph. org. uk/p/3133816

Soldiers say they’ve also needed to buy their own heaters to keep them selves warm in their room.

Morale at the base will be described as low. Janet told the particular BBC that she has thought of causing the Army because she feels they are not being listened to.

She said: “We’ve dropped some good soldiers recently through insufficient morale and we feel just a insufficient worth really. We don’t really feel we are really valued or cared for about”.

The particular soldiers believe the problem stems from the burst pipe that has not been fixed.

As a short-term solution, the Army has compensated the private contractor who keeps the barracks, Carillion Amey, to set up generators to provide heating and warm water.

However , the particular soldiers said the generators frequently ran out of fuel leaving all of them without hot water and heating for the at a time.

See also

The MoD insists troops still have access to hot water in the days and evenings.

The Defence Minister, Tobias Ellwood, acknowledged the MoD was striving to maintain some of its military barracks.

Giving proof to MPs on the Commons Protection Select Committee, Mr Ellwood produced a candid admission that the Imod “needs more money” to keep up fixes.

A 2017 Military Continuous Attitude Survey showed the 4% decline in satisfaction with all the overall stands of Service lodging, with just under half (49%) associated with military personnel saying they’re pleased with their housing.

In a report published in Nov 2016, the National Audit Workplace (NAO) warned the Department experienced a “huge challenge in maintaining the estate”, and had only been able to undertake “essential maintenance” since 2009.

The NAO estimations there’s an £ 8. five billion funding gap for renovating barracks and managing the MOD’s estate over the next 30 years.