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Birmingham Must Fight If It Wants The Treasury North Campus


Birmingham could miss out on the chance to host the new Treasury North campus, as a string of potential relocations overlook the Midlands and head for Manchester, Leeds and Newcastle.

Reports from Whitehall sources suggested that the main Treasury North campus will be located in Leeds, Newcastle or Teesside, the Financial Times reported.

The campus will include other government departments linked to economic policy and will be anchored by a 50K SF Treasury regional hub.

The Foreign Office and the Department of Culture, Media and Sport are reported to be looking at Manchester.

Announcements are expected in the budget, due to be delivered on 3 March.

Reports suggested that, among Midlands locations, Wolverhampton has so far been identified as a winner. The Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government is understood to be finalising plans for a relocation to the city.

The Department for Transport is looking at plans for a substantial relocation to Birmingham, The Times reported, where plans were already in train to relocate 1,700 civil servants to a new government hub at 102 New Street.

However, plans for relocations are evolving. Whilst the Foreign Office has recently been tipped for Manchester, this follows an earlier report that it was moving to Glasgow. Other government departments are being clustered in regions with particular strengths, so that an economic cluster moves to the north east and a health cluster forms in Yorkshire, The Times reported.

Today the West Midlands hosts 29,000 civil servants, compared to 92,000 in London and 56,000 in the north west.

The latest moves are signs of progress by the Government Property Agency, now at work on plans to relocate up to 22,000 civil servants out of London.

According to senior sources cited by the FT the proposals are looking more promising than several decades of previous attempts to relocate a large part of Whitehall away from the South East. However, the economic impact of large-scale civil service relocations has been questioned.