Russell Brand invited to meet shipyard workers on Trident replacement programme after calling for it to be scrapped

Brand’s Trews video urged money being spent on defence to go on the NHS 

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The Independent Online

Russell Brand has been invited to face the shipyard staff working on the Trident replacement programme after calling for it to be abandoned.

The comedian-turned-activist had dedicated a broadcast on his political YouTube channel 'The Trews' to criticise government spending on the nuclear submarine programme and its replacement, arguing this money should instead be ploughed back into the NHS.

BAE has an estimated 1,400 people working on designs for the Successor submarine programme. It is expected to cost between £15billion and £20billion if approved by the Government, although some activists claim this figure will be even higher.

In his ‘Trident vs the NHS' video, Brand asked: “How do you get a properly funded NHS, is it at the expense of the arms industry? The answer is obviously yes”.

Barrow Labour MP John Woodcock has released his own video challenging Brand’s comments, where he urged him to “come to Barrow and meet some of this workforce” instead of having a debate over YouTube.

"This is a substantial investment, but the overall majority of this goes on employing the many thousands of the most highly-skilled engineers and manufacturers in my constituency and right across the United Kingdom,” he said.

“We cannot possibly know the threats that are going to be facing the UK in 20, or 30, or 40-years-time.

"If we end up in a nightmare scenario where we are experiencing nuclear blackmail I want us to have more to be able to defend this country than a sharp-witted, eccentric comedian."