GCHQ director Jeremy Fleming has announced the organisation’s plans to open a new site in Manchester. The all-new secure location in the North West of England will be at the heart of the nation’s security, using “cutting-edge technology and technical ingenuity” to identify and disrupt threats posed to the UK. The aim is for the planned site to open in 2019, subsequently bringing hundreds of new jobs to the area.
The Manchester site will extend GCHQ’s network of locations in the UK, which currently sees a headquarters in Cheltenham and offices in Bude (Cornwall) as well as Scarborough. Last year, the National Cyber Security Centre, which is part of GCHQ, opened its new hq near Victoria in London.
“I’m delighted that we’re opening a new site in the city of Manchester,” stated Fleming. “It will create hundreds of high calibre jobs for people who will have a vital role to play in keeping this country safe. Our new facility will open up a huge new pool of highly talented, ‘tech savvy’ recruits who’ll be vital to our future success.”
Fleming added: “Manchester is a city full of innovation and talent. It’s also a city known for its tolerance and inclusivity. Last year, of course, that tolerance and inclusivity was tragically attacked by someone who had neither of these qualities. 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.”
GCHQ works alongside MI5 and the Secret Intelligence Service (MI6) to keep Britain safe. Its heritage stretches right back to its beginnings at Bletchley Park, where code-breakers helped the wartime intelligence efforts.
The ingenuity and problem-solving capabilities of GCHQ’s wartime founders is still abundant today in how the organisation’s members of staff help to counter online and real-world threats from nation states, criminal groups, terrorists and individuals.
Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchester City Council, commented: “This announcement will create hundreds of jobs and represents a huge vote of confidence in the talent pool of potential employees in and around the Manchester area. GCHQ performs a vital role helping to keep the country safe. We very much look forward to welcoming the organisation to the city in 2019.”
GCHQ is already recruiting for a range of roles across its existing sites, while job roles at its new Manchester offices will be advertised later on this year.