Skip to main content

12th April 2018

GCHQ to open new spy base in Manchester

The facility will apparently create hundreds of jobs for people in and around the city
GCHQ to open new spy base in Manchester
Image: GCHQ to open new spy base in Manchester

GCHQ has announced plans to build a new intelligence base in Manchester which will open in 2019.

The security agency is opening the new facility in an attempt to boost the country’s defences against terror attacks, following the bomb attack the city faced last year.

The announcement coincided with CYBERUK 2018 conference at Manchester Central — the flagship event on cyber security for the National Cyber Security Centre.

Officials commented the base would be “at the heart of the nation’s security, using cutting-edge technology and technical ingenuity” to counter terrorists, threats and organised crime. They will work closely with MI5 and MI6.

Director of GCHQ, Jeremy Fleming, said he was “delighted”, and promised that the facility would create hundreds of jobs. He went on to say: “Our new facility will open up a huge new pool of highly talented, tech-savvy recruits vital to our future success”.

He also praised the impressive response of the city to last year’s terror attack which took place during an Ariana Grande performance at Manchester Arena. He commented: “Manchester is a city full of innovation and talent. It is also a city known for its tolerance and inclusivity, which last year was tragically attacked by someone who had neither.

“In that difficult time, we at GCHQ drew strength from the togetherness and resilience shown by all of Manchester’s communities. That’s how you tackle terrorism”.

Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchester City Council said: “This announcement will create hundreds of jobs and represents a huge vote of confidence in the potential talent pool of employees in and around Manchester. GCHQ perform a vital role in helping to keep the country safe and we look forward to welcoming them to the city in 2019”.

GCHQ’s headquarters is located in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, and it has offices in Scarborough, North Cornwall, and North Yorkshire.

The security agency also has some Manchester roots, when University of Manchester pioneer Alan Turing deciphered German codes at Bletchley Park, which provided crucial information to defeat the Nazis.

More Coverage

John Rylands Library to undergo major £7.6m transformation

The John Rylands will undergo a £7.6m revision, allowing the building to meet mid-21st century needs

University round-up: new 24/7 helpline, (nearly) oldest-ever graduate, and a rise in burglaries

Read the latest news from UK universities, featuring a new 95-year-old graduate and the rollout of a new 24/7 helpline service

Students’ Union release statement in response to “Pro-Life Society” petition

The Students’ Union Exec team has released a statement outlining their legal position in regards to the creation of and affiliation with new societies

Students’ Union addresses new Freedom of Speech Act

The government’s new Higher Education (Freedom of Speech) Act will come into force from 1 August 2024 and aims to be a provision for freedom of speech and academic freedom across universities and Students’ Unions