An Ipswich tax office is still struggling to get rid of bed bugs in the building after almost two years, a union has claimed.

The HM Revenues and Customs (HMRC) office in Brooke Lawrance House in Civic Drive has undergone chemical treatments and steam cleans to get rid of the bugs, but it has not resolved the issue that appeared at the office in the summer of 2022, the Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS) has said.

HMRC said no bed bug sightings have been reported since the start of the year and said the health and safety of employees is its "top priority".

PCS general secretary Fran Heathcote said: “The bed bug issue in Brooke Lawrance House hasn’t been entirely resolved, and a presence was identified as recently as January."

She added: "At the time, a small area was cordoned off and the department arranged with contractors for precautionary steam-cleaning of the area in question.

"PCS continue to monitor the situation.” 

Ipswich Star: Brooke Lawrance House in IpswichBrooke Lawrance House in Ipswich (Image: Charlotte Bond)


The HMRC office, which employs more than 500 members of staff, rents out two and a half floors of the town centre’s AXA building. 

Previously it was also reported a sniffer dog had been visiting the office fortnightly and carried out searches for the insects.  

The building is currently on the market for £15million.


But HMRC says bug hasn't been seen since January


An HMRC spokesperson said: “There have been no bed bug sightings in Brook Lawrance House since January.

“The health and safety of employees is our top priority and we followed expert advice to treat and manage the issue.”

Martyn Mellis, PCS branch secretary, said last year about the issue: “They’ve tried to fumigate the place, but that hasn't worked.

“Some people have been going in every day, but some have been working from home because they are really worried about catching a bed bug and taking it home. 

“If you are caring for an elderly relative or have children at home, the last thing you want is to bring bed bugs from work."