I have deep and lasting affection for the Armed Forces - not least because my partner Tim is a serving officer with the British Army. With a large number of constituents who have served - or continue to serve - in the Army, I am determined to do all I can to improve the working lives of military personnel and to ensure that veterans receive the support and recognition they so richly deserve.
Brecon is proud to be the location of the Army's HQ in Wales and 160th Brigade. The town is also home to Derring Lines - the Infantry Battle School, an important training facility for soldiers. Further down the A40 is the Sennybridge Training Area - another vital training facility. I am extremely grateful to the Army for their enduring relationship with Brecon. It is extremely important to all of us - not least in terms of celebrating our history.
I am actively campaigning against the closure of Brecon Barracks. The closure, which is scheduled for 2027, would be a tragic loss to our community. In addition to its truly historical and social significance, it cannot be overstated how critical the facility is to our national security - something which was evident once again during the Covid 19 pandemic, when the Army's joint response was organised from Brecon Barracks.
In September 2020, I joined the Armed Forces Parliamentary Scheme to learn about the practical experience of serving soldiers. This course, which I am carrying out in my spare time, will help me understand the sacrifices our military personnel make and the priorities and structure of the Ministry of Defence.