Hundreds helped in first year of accommodation service at RAF Wittering

Hundreds of RAF Wittering personnel have been helped chose their home in the first year of the Future Accommodation Model (FAM) being based at the base.

By Stephen Briggs
Tuesday, 8th June 2021, 11:21 am
Group Captain Jo Lincoln in conversation with Air Vice Marshal Maria Byford on the launch day in June 2020
Group Captain Jo Lincoln in conversation with Air Vice Marshal Maria Byford on the launch day in June 2020

In 2019 the MOD decided to pilot a new way of providing living accommodation to personnel and their families, providing more choice to more personnel over where, how, and with whom they live.

RAF Wittering was chosen as one of three pilot sites for the FAM project, which launched at the Station in June 2020.

Whether single, married, in a civil partnership, or an established long-term relationship, FAM applies to all eligible service personnel regardless of their relationship status. Equally, service parents who have their children over 80 nights per calendar year can also apply for FAM.

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Danielle Rigby is the implementation lead for the FAM Project. She said: “For me, this is about making sure our people can find the right place to live. Being able to choose the town, choose the house, choose the décor, choose the school; all these things make a difference to wellbeing and morale. FAM is a real step-up for Defence.”

The flexibility of the FAM programme caught on fast and the Wittering team were soon processing dozens of applications as people quickly understood the project’s potential to improve their lives.

FAM has helped Senior Aircraftman Luke Summers from 5001 to buy his first ever home. He applied during the middle of the pandemic in October 2020. Luke said: “My experience of the FAM Pilot has been impressively uncomplicated and rewarding. Even during the lockdown, I was receiving regular updates as to how it was progressing. I saved thousands when purchasing my first property and the monthly core payment helps with all the costs.”

Stability is also a major feature of the project, with non-resident parents who have their children for more than 80 nights per year also able to apply.

Over 300 applications have been processed for personnel who now have more choice over where, how and with whom they live - and they receive the financial support to do it.

Group Captain Jo Lincoln, Station Commander at RAF Wittering, said: “The Future Accommodation Model means our eligible personnel can make choices about which accommodation and housing best suit their requirements, and the needs of their family.

“It’s an honour that Wittering was chosen as a pilot site for FAM, and Danielle and her team, supported by my Personnel Support Flight have given everything they can to getting this project off the ground over the last year. Well done to all involved and thank you on behalf of the personnel of RAF Wittering!”