Moray task force today intensified the strength and commitment of its campaign to retain the RAF presence in Moray by doubling its membership.
The group, which was formed in October in response to the UK Government's Strategic Defence and Security Review, has worked both to secure the future of RAF Lossiemouth and to minimise the negative effects of the closure of RAF Kinloss.
The newly structured group now comprises representatives from 18 different organisations compared to 9, with new members including Lossiemouth Business Association, Knockomie Hotel, Highland Council, union representatives and Moray Tourism Development Group.
Task force Co-chairman Calum MacPherson said:
"The fact we have entered 2011 with an expanded task force demonstrates that we have stepped up a gear and it shows the strength of feeling for continued action and the resolve of the whole community to ensure we secure the best possible outcome for Moray over the next few weeks and months.
"During its short lifetime the Moray task force has ensured the convincing social, economic and defence arguments for keeping the RAF in Moray have been heard at the highest possible levels. Our increased strength shows that the focus and determination in Moray and beyond is greater than ever before. We are sending a clear message to the decision-makers in the UK Government that as we will continue our efforts until a final decision is made."
Councillor David Stewart, Chair of the Lossie Action Group, said: " I am delighted to be part of the new and expanded task force structure. We need to push now for a decision to be made as soon as possible."
Mike Devenney, of Moray College, said "The task now is to do everything we can to remove the uncertainty at the earliest opportunity. We still have everything to play for and only a matter of weeks to ensure that the right decision is made for the people of Moray."
The task force now includes the following members:
The local MP and MSP will also be invited to participate in meetings.
To find out more about the task force and its work visit moraytaskforce.com