The guns have fallen silent on an internationally important military site in East Hampshire.

There has been a break in training on Longmoor with the ranges being reopened to the public for the Christmas and new year period.

Access to the site between Liss Forest, Greatham, Whitehill and Liphook has been extremely limited for months because of an intensive programme of training.

Thousands of Ukrainian troops have been put through their paces as part of Operation Interflex, with many surrounding residents complaining of increased overnight military noise.

But it seems the intensity is being reduced in 2024 with the MoD updating locals in a December statement.

The organisation said: “It is our intent and desire that we can return to the normal system of control measures that we had in place prior to the current phase of Operation Interflex, the UK MoD package of support to our friends from Ukraine.

“Subject to byelaws, the training area will, in the normal course of events, be opened to the public on a routine basis.

“The exception will be when areas are required for intensive training or when training of a particularly hazardous nature is taking place. In this event notice will be given on parish websites as well as at access points by notice and sign.”

The MoD wants to stress that the perceived winding-down of operations at Longmoor is not indicative of UK’s support for Ukraine. 

Serious numbers of Ukrainian troops remain in training while the intensity of operations at Longmoor has allowed the MoD to improve and develop facilities at other sites.

The MoD added: “We would like to emphasise that the coming to an end of this particular phase of Interflex should in no way be taken as an indication that UK support to the people of Ukraine is on the wane.

“On the contrary, conducting the very intensive package of training that has been delivered at Longmoor during the course of the year has allowed us to concurrently develop more suitable facilities and at scale elsewhere. 

“It has been a huge privilege for us to be able to deliver such a high level of intense and quality training to the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) during this very critical time and we wish them well. 

“However, we would also like to thank the community for the tolerance, support and forbearance which you have shown during the course of the year. 

“You have enabled us to complete the task to maximum effect and ensure that the partner nation troops we have had under training are able to return to their homeland with the very best preparation for the very difficult challenges that we and they know lie ahead.”