Council to sell off High Street office

COLCHESTER Borough Council is selling its High Street office building as it has become “surplus to requirements”, the authority has announced.

Annie Davidson

COLCHESTER Borough Council is selling its High Street office building as it has become “surplus to requirements”, the authority has announced.

After 20 years Angel Court will be sold and the majority of the staff moved to the council's other offices in Rowan House in Sheepen Road.

However the council has pledged to keep a town centre office for face-to-face contact with the public and is seeking residents' views on what Angel Court should be used for.

Workers will be moved to the new accommodation in stages and the changes will not begin until the end of 2009.

Angel Court currently accommodates the council's executive management team, environmental and protective services and the customer service team, as well as officers from life opportunities and strategic policy and regeneration service areas.

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At Rowan House they will join corporate management, resource management and some officers from street services and strategic policy and regeneration.

A spokesman said the council's flexible working strategy had “significantly reduced” the need for office accommodation with staff now more likely to work from home, work outside of the previous 9am-5pm shifts or be based off-site at other locations.

Paul Smith, portfolio holder for resources and business said: “As flexible working is more widely implemented across the council, Angel Court becomes surplus to our office requirements.

“Having looked at a range of options, the movement of office based staff from Angel Court to Rowan House, and the sale of Angel Court offers the best value for money.”

Martin Hunt, portfolio holder for communication and customers said: “We will ensure that we ask our residents for their views as to what they would like the town centre site to deliver, to make sure we are addressing their needs.”

There are currently no plans to move staff out of the town hall which is also in Colchester High Street but the council spokesman said the asset management strategy continually reviewed use of resources.

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