Armed forces set up team in Whitehall 'Brexit bunker' as government prepares for a no-deal

The bunker is underneath the Ministry of Defence (PA)
The bunker is underneath the Ministry of Defence (PA)

A team from the armed forces have set up a Brexit bunker under the Ministry of Defence as the government prepares for Britain to leave the European Union without a deal.

The team will help direct some 3,500 military personnel at ‘very high readiness mode’, who have been put on standby to help the government if needed in the event of disruption caused by a no-deal departure, Sky News reported.

From next Monday, troops will be ready to be deployed at a day’s notice, under something called ‘Operation Redfold’, which covers several areas of government.

Control of overall planning in the event of a no-deal will shift from the Cabinet Office to the government’s emergency committee Cobra.

There will be near 24-hour manning of critical departments most at risk from any disruption.

The teams will cover areas such as health, transport and defence to divert resources or deploy manpower where required, reported Sky News.

Operation Redfold is the military side of no-deal contingency preparations.

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The army could be used to help transport food, fuel and other goods into and around the country.

A 200-strong team of military personnel is ready to drive fuel tankers to petrol stations if required.

Military bases could also be used to park lorries and other vehicles backed up at ports if there are delays with customs checks at the borders.

Preparations are being made for a no-deal Brexit across the UK, including at Ramsgate Port in Kent (PA)
Preparations are being made for a no-deal Brexit across the UK, including at Ramsgate Port in Kent (PA)

The nuclear-proof bunker, called Pindar, is deep underground, beneath the MoD’s main building in Whitehall. It is the facility used by the armed forces at a time of war or national emergency.

‘We are always willing to support wider government planning for any scenario, and we have committed to holding 3,500 troops at readiness to aid contingency plans,’ said a MoD spokesman.

Military chiefs have already spent at least £23m on stockpiling food, fuel, spare parts and ammunition at bases overseas in case supply lines are disrupted.

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