West Northamptonshire Council is pursuing plans to relocate from its current Daventry base to offices elsewhere in the town as part of proposals towards addressing future financial challenges.
The move is part of a planned review of all the Council’s existing buildings across the West Northants area, which it inherited from the former county, district and borough authorities on 1 April last year.
The Council currently operates from 35-year-old offices at Lodge Road, Daventry which were previously the old headquarters of Daventry District Council. Plans to close the office and relocate to smaller premises in the town by the end of the current financial year are the first steps of an office rationalisation programme the Council has committed to delivering, to achieve much-needed savings built into its budgets over the next three years.
As a new unitary authority, the buildings review also looks at opportunities for bringing together services from the old councils more effectively and enabling staff to work more flexibly within their local communities.
Plans to make savings from building rationalisation form part of the Council’s budget, with savings of £250k this year, rising to £750k over the next three years.
Work is now under way to identify options for alternative premises in Daventry, so that residents can continue to access the same services locally, with the relocation set to take place by April next year. Council staff are being kept informed and engaged as the plans continue to take shape.
Councillor Jonathan Nunn, Leader of West Northamptonshire Council, said: “As a new unitary council we have always been open about the need for us to rationalise our offices. It forms part of the aim of the unitary to make services better and more efficient.
“Every penny counts, so thinking about the buildings and space we inherited from the old councils is something that the public are rightly expecting of us.
“Our new council’s service arrangements, coupled with staff adapting to different, more flexible ways of working after Covid, mean our Lodge Road offices are at half capacity and no longer deliver good value for residents.
“All councils are starting to see significant financial pressures surfacing for the years ahead, so we need to work smarter and more effectively whilst also being duty bound to deliver the savings we've identified.
“We appreciate these future plans will mean significant change for a number of our staff currently based in Daventry and we will be keeping them fully updated and engaged on the plans as they take shape.
“Although this will make significant savings for the public, we will remain in the town and residents will still be able to access all the same services that they can at the moment.”