Shock as report calls for closure of RAF Lakenheath

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The future of the USAF at RAF Lakenheath is uncertain after a US government-commissioned report recommended it should close.

The closure of RAF Lakenheath has been recommended in a report carried out by Rand Corp and commissioned by the Office of the Secretary of Defence.

The report also suggests relocation of some forces based at RAF Mildenhall back to the US. However states the base should remain open and host a modestly sized wing.

The United States Air Force (USAF) has had a presence in at RAF Lakenheath since 1948 and currently employs approximately 4,600 personnel at the base.

It is expected that the Pentagon will announce its plans for base closures and consolidation this spring.

The proposals are part of on-going cost cutting being undertaken by the US military. The report carried out by Rand Corp states that closing RAF Lakenheath would achieve savings of $211 million per year.

This is not the first time this year the USAF’s British bases have been threatened by cuts. Earlier this year it was announced that both RAF Lakenheath and RAF Mildenhall could see a dramatic reduction in personnel as the US Air Force worked to cut airmen by 25,000.