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March 4, 2017, 12:24pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Dunoon slid into obscurity and complained bitterly about going bust after the Americans left the Holy Loch...

While Helensburgh plans to repeat the exercise on the Gare Loch, with English invaders replacing the American invaders this time
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NEW housing, more community facilities and better transport links are key to making sure Helensburgh is ready for a major increase in the area's Royal Navy population.

The forthcoming expansion in the number of people based at Faslane and Coulport, as HM Naval Base Clyde becomes home to the Navy's entire submarine fleet, is expected to see millions of pounds of investment in Helensburgh and its surrounding communities.

The expansion plans led to the signing this week of a formal agreement which will see the Ministry of Defence, Argyll and Bute Council and other local organisations work together to prepare both navy personnel and the wider community for a major change to life in the area.

More facilities are to be provided in the area for community use – including a £2 million refurbishment of the Drumfork Centre in Churchill Square, due to be completed by 2018 – while the MoD's longer-term wish list includes hopes for a new railway station at Shandon for those working at Faslane.

The MoD is also rethinking its plan to build a new all-weather sports facility at Ardenconnel in Rhu, and is instead looking at other sites in the wider area.

On housing, the MoD and the council have already begun to work with the private and social housing sectors to “develop options for choice in the housing market”.

And in education, a 'service pupil adviser' has started work with Argyll and Bute Council, funded by the MoD's education support fund, to provide advice for children of forces personnel in the area.

Helensburgh set to swell under wave of £1.3bn Navy expansion (From Helensburgh Advertiser)
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