Tyne & Wear

Northumberland County Council HQ sell-off 'could save £13m'

County Hall, Morpeth Image copyright Northumberland County Council
Image caption The authority said it hoped to make "key decisions" by October

More than £13m could be saved through the sale of a council's headquarters, it has been claimed.

Northumberland County Council announced in January it planned to close and sell-off County Hall in Morpeth.

Now a report to be discussed at a Policy Board meeting on April 8 has said millions could be saved over 25 years through lower running costs at a new base.

Morpeth Town Council fears its closure would impact on the local economy.

The county council said it needs to make £130m of savings over the next four years.

Its preferred option is to relocate to a smaller HQ at Ashington as part of a plan to rejuvenate its town centre.

Councillor Grant Davey, leader of the Labour-run authority said: "The council is working in a challenging financial context.

"A significantly reduced budget means we have to change the way we do business, looking at everything we do and taking action to reduce costs and support local communities."

The authority said it hoped to make "key decisions" by October.

About 1,000 people work in the building, which was built in 1981.

In January, Morpeth Town Council warned "the town is inevitably going to be affected" if County Hall is sold.

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