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Hundreds of HMRC staff to be brought under one roof as town hosts customer compliance centre

PUBLISHED: 06:01 05 February 2020

Brooke Lawrance House in Civic Drive, Ipswich, which will eventually become an HMRC specialist site  Picture: GOOGLEMAPS

Brooke Lawrance House in Civic Drive, Ipswich, which will eventually become an HMRC specialist site Picture: GOOGLEMAPS

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Ipswich has been chosen as one of five tax office specialist sites across the country, with around 460 staff due to be brought together into one office building later this year.

Brooke Lawrance House in Civic Drive, Ipswich, which will eventually become an HMRC specialist site  Picture: GOOGLEMAPSBrooke Lawrance House in Civic Drive, Ipswich, which will eventually become an HMRC specialist site Picture: GOOGLEMAPS

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) staff from Haven House and St Clare House in Ipswich are set to transfer to two and a half refurbished floors at Brooke Lawrance House in Civic Drive, which is home to insurance giant Axa.

The move is part of a national reorganisation at HMRC which involves 170 'legacy' offices being brought together into 13 regional centres, and five specialist sites.

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The Brooke Lawrance House will officially be a "transitional" site until 2027/28 at which point it will become of HMRC's specialist sites.

HMRC, which announced in September 2018 that it would be retaining a presence in Ipswich, said Brook Lawrance House was chosen as "the preferred location" as it meets its future needs.

It also represents "best value for money", it said, while being in the centre of town and close to the train station and other local amenities.

"HMRC is standing by its commitment to maintain a presence in the East of England and has now confirmed that staff will be moving to Brooke Lawrance House, which will act as HMRC's transitional and later as a location for specialist work in Ipswich," it said.

It signed a lease for Brooke Lawrance House last year.

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An HMRC spokeswoman said: "HMRC's specialist site in Ipswich will ensure we retain a presence in the town and in the East of England, while providing modern work spaces our people deserve.

"The decision to move to Brooke Lawrance House supports HMRC's vision to become a more highly-skilled operation offering modern, digital services to create a tax authority fit for the future."

The building will accommodate around 460 full time equivalent employees, and is due to open to staff from late 2020/21.

HMRC announced its 10-year "transformation programme" back in November 2015, which was aimed at transforming the department's estate from 170 legacy offices to 13 regional centres, five specialist sites, a head office in London and eight transitional sites.

The Ipswich Specialist Site was earmarked "for work that cannot be done elsewhere including customer compliance roles".

HMRC staff at Brooke Lawrance House will have access to a café, reflection room and cycle parking as well as some parking spaces.

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