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Relocation of Government Functions

Volume 629: debated on Wednesday 11 October 2017

12. What plans he has to relocate civil service jobs to cities, towns and regions outside London. (900884)

The Government’s industrial strategy will help to create a more balanced economy by moving arm’s length public bodies out of London and the surrounding areas, and into clusters in the regions and devolved nations of the UK. Our hubs programme is also expected to save £1.78 billion over 20 years, as well as providing state of the art buildings from which civil servants can deliver world-class services to our citizens.

I am delighted at the announcement of 6,000 more jobs at a Government hub in Leeds, but does the Minister agree that infrastructure spending is also critical to delivering greater prosperity for the north?

The Leeds hub will be a catalyst for growth in the surrounding region. We continue to do more to connect our communities and drive productivity. The Chancellor recently announced a further £300 million investment for HS2 and £100 million for the road network—significant investments for the northern powerhouse. That will be crucial for driving growth and regeneration in the north and midlands.

Torbay has not only beautiful beaches, but direct rail connections to London, Manchester and Birmingham, improved road links, and sites ready for regeneration. Which of the plans the Minister listed does she believe present the greatest opportunity for relocating jobs to Torbay?

My hon. Friend has, as ever, emphasised the stunning attributes of his constituency. Our commitment to the public bodies relocation programme seeks to move significant numbers of public servants out of London. I assure my hon. Friend that I have heard his advertisement for the English riviera and the potential it certainly brings.