The Ministry of Defence has awarded a £369m contract to Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group to extend the life of the RAF’s Hercules fleet to 2030. Originally the Hercules fleet was expected to be withdrawn in 2022 but given the increasing demands on the British armed forces in the foreseeable future primarily in the fight against ISIS this decision was reversed in the recent Strategic Defence and Security Review.
The six year contract covers Marshall for the airframe and avionics as well as Rolls Royce for the engines and Lockheed Martin UK for some of the US-specific equipment.
Defence Secretary Michael Fallon told reproters;
This contract is further evidence of what the growing defence budget, with £178bn investment in equipment, means for the UK. It will ensure our essential RAF transport aircraft are prepared for operations for years to come.