Andover, Hampshire, England, Great Britain

🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 Andover is a town in the English county of Hampshire. The town is on the River Anton, a major source of the Test, and is situated on the major A303 trunk road at the eastern end of Salisbury Plain, 18 miles west of the town of Basingstoke, both major rail stops. It is 14 miles NNW of the city of Winchester, 35 miles north of the city of Southampton and 65 miles WSW of London. Employment The town's largest employer is the Ministry of Defence. RAF Andover was opened on Andover Airfield, to the south of the town, during the First World War and became the site of the RAF Staff College.

In 1926, the Andover War Memorial Hospital was opened by Field Marshall Allanby. The hospital currently provides inpatient rehabilitation, day hospital services, a minor injury unit and an outpatient unit, and is operated by Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, with some services being provided by Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust. In 1932 Andover gained a new industry when the printers for Kelly's Directory moved to the town.

During the Second World War, the RAF Staff College was the headquarters of RAF Maintenance Command, and gained a unique place in British history, as the first British military helicopter unit, the Helicopter Training School, was formed in January 1945 at RAF Andover. The airfield is no longer in use although the RAF retains a link to the area through the presence of 1213 (Andover) Squadron, Air Training Corps. When the RAF left the site became the Headquarters of the Quartermaster General and later Logistics Executive. In 2001, the Defence Logistics Organisation (DLO) was formed and Andover became one of its major sites. Since 2012, the site has been the home of Army Headquarters. The Armed Forces Chaplaincy Centre is based locally at Amport House, as is the Army Air Corps Centre and the Museum of Army Flying at Middle Wallop.

Major industries include Twinings the tea and coffee firm, Thomson International Publishers, who produce the Pitkin Guides to be found in many churches and other notable buildings, financial institutions such as Simplyhealth and Lloyds Banking Group, and the Stannah Group, whose HQ is also in the town. Among the proposals in the council's Borough Local Plan 2006 are plans to develop the former site of RAF Andover to Class B1, B2 and B8 uses. This site has been partially developed and is named Andover Business Park. The business park currently houses a Co-op Food Distribution centre, Rich Foods Factory, Costa Coffee Drive Thru, Pure Gym, Travelodge and the Chalkhill Blue pub.

Image: Adobe Stock J-F Phillips #289891321

Andover has a population of over 26,000 people. Andover also forms part of the wider Portsmouth-Southampton metropolitan area which has a population of over 1,547,000 people. Andover is ranked #638 for startups with a score of 0.244. Andover is situated 23 km north-west of Winchester.

Twin Towns – Sister Cities Andover is twinned with the towns of Redon in France, Goch in Germany, and Andover, Massachusetts in the United States.

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