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Office Closures

Volume 450: debated on Monday 9 October 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions which of the offices of his Department and its agencies (a) have closed over the last three years and (b) are planned for closure by 2008. (90671)

The Department continually evaluates the services it provides and the offices that are required to meet its changing structure in order to deliver a better and more efficient service to customers. As part of the rationalisation of accommodation over the last three years, there has been one DWP Head Office closure in London, two in the Yorkshire and the Humber Government office region and one in the north-east Government office region. One closure is planned in London, five in the Yorkshire and the Humber Government office region, two in the north- west Government office region and three in the north- east Government region. Details have been placed in the Library.

Both Jobcentre Plus and the Pension Service are transforming and modernising the services they offer, making them more readily available through the telephone and the internet. Details of Jobcentre Plus and the Pension Service office closures have also been placed in the Library.

The Child Support Agency closed its Basingstoke Satellite Processing Centre in December 2005. The agency also intends to relinquish the Clitheroe and Blackburn Filestores on 1 October 2006.

The Disability and Carers’ Service closed the Sutton Disability Benefit Centre on 31 December 2005 and will also withdraw from the Disability Benefits Centre at Arden House, Newcastle, by 31 December 2006, with work from both offices being transferred to other existing Disability and Carers’ Service units.