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470 jobs secured by £370m MoD contracts

The Hawk T2 Jet is mainly used for training

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RAF

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Training at RAF Valley currently uses Hawk T2 aircraft

Contracts worth £372m to help with the training of Typhoon and Tornado jet pilots will secure 470 jobs at RAF Valley on Anglesey.

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) cash means in-service support for Hawk training aeroplanes will continue at the site until at least 2020.

These are used by the UK armed forces to prepare pilots before conversion to frontline jets.

The deal secures 700 jobs in total, with Anglesey the main services hub.

The fleet of Hawk T1 and T2 aircrafts are used for training, with pilots then graduating to Typhoons and a variety of Royal Navy and RAF crafts.

They are also used by the RAF Aerobatic Team – The Red Arrows.

Five other sites around the UK will also benefit from the four contracts, with BAE systems to provide modifications, repairs and advice on the planes.

Minister for defence procurement Philip Dunne called it “a world-class training aircraft for our future fast jet aircrew”.

He said: “Pilots currently flying Typhoons and Tornados with such precision targeting Daesh (so-called Islamic State) in Iraq and Syria to keep Britain safe, first learnt their skills in the Hawk.”

They will also be used to train pilots for the new F-35 Lightning II – described by Mr Dunne as one of the most advanced aircraft in the world.

The news comes a month after the MoD awarded a contract to Ascent Flight Training to provide basic pilot training at RAF Valley until at least 2033.

A separate £79m contract with Rolls Royce to produce, test and repair Hawk engines will see 40 jobs sustained across two sites at RAF Valley and Bristol.

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