JobCentre Plus co-locates with South Holland District Council
The relocation of JobCentre Plus to the South Holland District Council (SHDC) offices on Priory Road, Spalding has been completed.
Construction company, Lindum Group has finished remodelling the existing space to create new offices for the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), including several self-service and assisted-service desks.
Malcolm Chandler Deputy Leader and Portfolio Holder for Strategy, Governance and Transformation at South Holland District Council said: "It's very important to ensure that the office space is put to best, most economically viable, use. The space already hosts several related agencies such as the Citizen's Advice Bureau and the SHDC Customer Services team, with the SHDC Housing Team also located nearby. The council is working to create a community hub to provide frontline services to residents. Adding the DWP continues to develop a joined-up approach that will allow staff from related services to share knowledge and experience, in order to better serve residents."
The DWP has relocated its offices from Westlode Street, Spalding to the ground floor of the council building, where it is situated opposite the Citizen's Advice Bureau and the newly created Customer Service area. The project is part of a national co-location programme by DWP to co-locate with councils to offer a more joined-up public service to residents.
Paul Carr, Operations Manager at Jobcentre Plus said: "The move to the Priory Road at South Holland District Council's premises provides us with an excellent opportunity to work closer with our partners, whilst providing customers with access to the full range of jobcentre and local authority services under the same roof. The 'one-stop-shop' creates an improved experience for customers in a modern and welcoming environment, whilst proving cost effective for the tax payer. The changes we are making to our estate across the country will offer a more efficient service, and deliver good value for the taxpayer - saving over £135 million a year, for the next 10 years."
It is also part of the council's Moving Forward programme, which aims to support the sustainable future of the Priory Road offices, through which SHDC will generate new income by letting out surplus office space.
Lindum Group, which has offices in Peterborough, Lincoln and York, were contracted by the council to complete the refurbishment. Lindum Group manager Steve Worboys said the project had been completed on time and to budget. "In total, we've had a team of 15 people involved since it began in January, including our site agent Luke Scotney, who is a Spalding lad," he said. "The majority of our sub-contractors and most of our supply chain also came from within a 30 mile radius of the town."
"One of those who worked on site was apprentice carpenter Charlie Wells. He gained valuable joinery experience by hanging doors, fitting skirting boards and building kitchen units. From Lindum's perspective, it was great to work with SHDC and we are delighted with the success of the project. We hope it is the start of an ongoing relationship with the authority."