The conversion of the CALIFES beamline of CTF3 into the "CERN Linear Electron Accelerator for Research" (CLEAR) facility was approved in December 2016. The primary focus for CLEAR is general accelerator R&D and component studies for existing and possible future accelerator applications. This includes studies for high gradient acceleration methods, e.g. for CLIC and plasma technology, and prototyping and validation of accelerator components, e.g. for the HL-LHC upgrade. The facility also provides irradiation test capabilities for characterisation of electronic components and for medical applications. A description of the facility with details on the achievable beam parameters, and the status and plans are presented.