DEFENCE giant BAE Systems and Qinetiq have been awarded a £45m Navy contract to shore up 250 Hampshire jobs.

The four-year Royal Navy contract will see the Hampshire based firms provide shore testing of combat system equipment for warships.

The work will be carried out at the Portsdown Technology Park in Portsmouth sustaining 250 local jobs.

It comes as BAE is considering a move to close its Portsmouth dockyard, threatening up to 3,000 job losses, as part of a review of its warships operations.

BAE is looking into the possibility of closing a yard in either Portsmouth or Clyde once the contract for two 65,000-tonne supercarrier warships ends in the next few years.