Thursday, February 29, 2024

Council reveals future office plans

Plans to bring more council teams together into a central office and make further improvements to customer service offerings at localities across West Northants are set to move forward in the year ahead.

West Northamptonshire Council (WNC) is progressing proposals to relocate the majority of its office workers to its base in One Angel Square (OAS), Northampton.

The move follows a thorough review which identified the Council has significantly more office space than it requires, along with a need to change how it uses its buildings to better support residents.

Council staff currently based in the modern part of the Guildhall in Northampton and some teams currently working from The Forum in Towcester will relocate to OAS in stages during 2024 and early 2025, and Northampton’s One Stop Shop will also move from the Guildhall to the lower ground floor of OAS.

The Council will retain the older, historic Guildhall and it will continue to house the Coroner’s Office, committee and meeting rooms.

The plans follow the relocation of services from Lodge Road, Daventry in the summer, and development of the nearby Abbey Centre into a locality hub including Adults, Children’s and other frontline WNC services joining community and voluntary partners.

Cllr Jonathan Nunn, Leader of West Northamptonshire Council, said: “Changes to the way we work and how we deliver our services mean we have a lot more office space than we need, so it makes real sense for us to review our buildings and it’s what taxpayers would expect us to do.

“Bringing more of our colleagues together into a central Northampton office will enable us to collaborate and innovate to deliver better services for all our residents. As we continue moving towards our commitment to become net zero by 2030, it will also help us reduce our carbon footprint as well as our running and maintenance costs to improve value for money for our residents.”

Once services have relocated from the modern part of the Guildhall during 2024 and 2025, the Council will be looking at disposal options for these surplus offices as it seeks to achieve efficiency savings for taxpayers. The historic part of the Guildhall is not included in these proposals.

Northampton Town Council will continue to operate from the old part of the Guildhall under the current lease arrangements which run until April 2025. WNC will then require the space to accommodate its committees, meetings and other services and will be working with the Town Council to explore suitable alternative locations for the authority when the current lease ends.

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