Priddy’s Hard – the 80-acre site due to be released for public housing schemes under a £1.6m Royal Navy reorganisation – looked likely to stay in navy hands.
The shock news was released by a Ministry of Defence spokesman, who said: ‘Both Priddy’s Hard and Whale Island sites are now being considered as possible locations for part of the future concentration of tasks.’
Priddy’s Hard was due to be freed for open sale in 1975, and Gosport Borough Council hoped to buy much of the 80-acre site for council development.
The navy said if the site was not selected for naval training, it may well be retained for naval housing or some other purpose.
It was navy policy to concentrate all new entry and general training at establishments mainly in the Portsmouth area.