Mid Suffolk join Babergh in approving plans to move to Endeavour House

Suffolk County Council's headquarters at Endeavour House, Ipswich

Suffolk County Council's headquarters at Endeavour House, Ipswich - Credit: Archant

Proposals for two local authorities to move to the home of Suffolk County Council have been approved by representatives.

Following Babergh District Council’s vote approving the move to Endeavour House, Mid Suffolk District Council also backed the plans at their full council meeting.

The move was proposed as part of its ‘public access strategy’, which includes deciding on one of the four options available for co-location of the joint council’s headquarters.

Options the councils considered were to locate all services to Hadleigh (home to Babergh), all services to Needham Market (home to Mid Suffolk), the sharing of accommodation in Endeavour House in Ipswich, or consider a new building for the councils.

Speaking after the meeting, Nick Gowrley, leader of Mid Suffolk District Council, said: “There is no doubt that the world of government and the public service sector is being transformed by technology, new ways of working and a challenging financial environment.

“Councillors have agreed the status quo is not an option. Their bold decision is the next step to ensuring services are better for residents, simpler for staff and more cost effective for tax payers.

“The decision shows our members see a move to Endeavour House as one that puts cost, modernisation, simplicity, reliability and convenience at the heart of the future delivery of Mid Suffolk District Council services.

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“The current ways the public access the council’s services are antiquated, confusing, difficult and bureaucratic.

“Tonight’s vote is local councillors saying they want this to be a thing of the past.”

However, leader of the opposition, Green Party councillor Andrew Stringer, said: “An awful lot of questions need to be answered and it feels like it’s more about the money than delivering services.

“There will be a number of issues that need to get sorted out.

“My fear – and I will do everything I can to make sure it doesn’t happen – is that people will spend more and more time sitting in traffic jams and not working in the community.

“We didn’t win the day and now we have to make sure any negative impacts from the decision don’t come to fruition.”