Video footage has been captured showing a military convoy carrying nuclear weapons passing through Glasgow around a mile from the city centre.

The footage was captured on Monday as the convoy headed along the M74 motorway westbound towards the M8 in the Oatlands area of the city.

The convoy was made up of approximately 17 vehicles, including a score of MOD police cars, a fire engine and at least three unmarked lorries. 

It was transporting nuclear warheads to RNAD Coulport on Loch Long by Helensburgh - the storage and loading facility for the nuclear warheads of the United Kingdom's Trident programme - from AWE Burghfield near Reading, where the warheads undergo repairs.

The video was shared online by Nukewatch UK, which monitors and tracks the movement of British nuclear weapons convoys, report that such trips are made at least six times a year. 

The group has previously expressed its “deep concerns” about the presence of the military convoy on the motorway so close to Glasgow city centre.

David Mackenzie of Nukewatch UK said: “The convoy came up earlier this week from Burghfield. There was also a video of it passing near Faslane. It had three carriers on the way up which is potentially six nuclear weapons in it. 

“This is a regular traffic. Although these are not armed nuclear weapons they do contain high explosive alongside radiological stuff like plutonium mainly but also uranium and tritium. So it’s obviously highly dangerous traffic. That’s the story of this particular convoy. 

“Nowadays the convoy’s much preferred route is up the A1, crossing over to the M6, coming up the M74 and going through Glasgow onto the Erskine Bridge towards Coulport. That is almost its consistent route. It hasn’t been on the Edinburgh bypass.”

Mr Mackenzie said that if an accident were to happen in the vicinity of the M74 south of Glasgow city centre - where the video was captured - then it would be of an “enormous disruptive nature”.

He added: “Obviously one of the scenarios that we have thought about within Nukewatch is what happens if you have a serious accident at Tradeston. Because of the traffic issues as well that would be the most likely place to have a really bad pile-up. 

“It’s interesting in that even if there’s not a radiological release, a convoy involved in a traffic incident or crash would be of such an enormous disruptive nature if it happened at Tradeston. The MOD would set up a cordon round the convoy itself. Just from a simple traffic point of view it would be a complete and utter nightmare but obviously if there was a radiological release it would be a much bigger nightmare.

“Any kind of wind in the middle of Glasgow you would get a minimum 5km plume of radiological materials. In that area it’s just unthinkable.

“MOD say that there is very little chance of an accident, which is probably true, they are very careful drivers. But if you are doing proper risk assessment you have to not only consider the likelihood of an incident but also what the potential impact would be, and that makes it a very severe risk.”

Back in July last year, concerns were raised over the secrecy of nuclear convoy routes following reports that the military convoys pass through Glasgow without the knowledge of Glasgow City Council. Instead, the MOD engages with other relevant agencies to inform any plans.

Mr Mackenzie branded the decision not to inform Glasgow City Council of the convoys passing through the city as “completely and utterly ridiculous”.

He said: “The police will be told because they deal with the traffic management issue. Occasionally police will tell the fire service but they don’t have any duty to do it. 

“Basically it’s MOD themselves and police, and citizens monitoring by Nukewatch, without which none of this would be publicly known at all.”

A MOD spokesperson said: “Defence nuclear materials are transported only when necessary, and the safety and security of the public are the highest priority. 

“All convoy operations follow strict and safe procedures, and in over 50 years of transporting nuclear material by road in the UK, there has never been an incident that has posed any radiation hazard to the public or the environment.”