North West Cambridgeshire MP, Shailesh Vara, welcomed an announcement in the House of Commons by defence minister, Tobias Ellwood, to retain RAF Molesworth in the constituency. Mr Ellwood said RAF Molesworth was one of five sites that had originally been earmarked for closure and sale but will now be retained. Mr Ellwood added that the site will continue to be used by the United States armed forced. The confirmation came in a speech to parliament on February 28. The decision is part of the defence estate organisation programme, which is being carried out by the Ministry of Defence assessing sites across the UK. The Secretary of State for Defence, Gavin Williamson, has also written to Mr Vara informing him of the retention of RAF Molesworth, saying that it has an ongoing defence use. Mr Vara said: Whilst this news was expected it is nevertheless welcome confirmation. The close co-operation between the UK and the US will continue at the base and it is also very good news for the local economy in the area, which has much input from all those at the base. The United States Air Force originally announced in 2015 its intention to pull out of RAF Molesworth by 2023 as part of a cost-cutting drive but the decision was reverse following a review in 2018. The base was set to return to Government control and had been mooted for sale and possible development.