Amey, the Defence Infrastructure Organisation and Station Services Squadron jointly deliver project to future-proof iconic Base Hangar at RAF Brize Norton

06 April 2021
Image of a base hangar at Brize Norton surrounded by scaffolding.

Teams from Amey, the Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO) and Unit Station Services Squadron at RAF Brize Norton demonstrated true collaboration recently when a project to replace part of the roof on the historic Base Hangar at RAF Brize Norton, was not only successfully delivered, but handed over six weeks ahead of schedule. 

‘Base Hangar’ is the largest and most recognisable hangar at RAF Brize Norton and towers over the north-eastern quadrant of the Station. Built in 1967, the hangar is a quarter of a mile long with half an acre of floor space and has undergone several changes and adaptations over the years to enable it to house more modern-day aircraft. The unique design comprises of six bays, allowing multiple aircraft types to be housed within the hangar to meet the requirements of the RAF fleet.  

Keeping the hangar operational was a crucial element of the programme. Bays 1 and 2 were re-roofed as a separate project two years earlier, so our teams were able to concentrate on Bays 3 – 6, allowing the RAF to continue with their operations throughout the duration of the works. 

Rob Hawkins, Amey’s Project Manager, and ex-Army Air Despatcher, understands the importance of ensuring operational capability isn’t compromised during infrastructure projects and was keen to make sure our engineers worked safely and effectively with minimal disruption to the RAF personnel working in the hangar. 

He commented, “As an ex-member of HM Armed Forces, I am acutely aware of the focus required to deliver safely at all times. With around 300 tonnes of scaffolding erected outside the hangar it was vital that our engineers understood the safety requirements when working at height and applied the same disciplines to their procedures as the RAF personnel they were working alongside. By reinforcing this message, we were able to achieve zero accidents and no Lost Time Incidents (LTIs) throughout the works.” 

The project is a great example of the Whole Force Approach, a UK Defence policy that encourages contractors to work closely with the Armed Forces and the MOD to ensure operational needs are met. 

The open and flexible working relationship that was adopted by Amey, the DIO and Unit Station Services Squadron meant that the project was completed in just 18 weeks – six weeks ahead of the planned completion date. 

Squadron Leader David Littlemore, Officer Commanding Station Services Squadron, added, “Base Hangar continues to be a vital asset for the maintenance of all aircraft types at RAF Brize Norton. These latest works to the roof will ensure it continues to be used for many years to come and the success of the project being delivered ahead of programme and on budget is a testament to the continued hard work of the whole force infrastructure team on the Unit from Station Services Squadron, the DIO and Amey.”