Council explores option to create efficient, environmentally-friendly Council base in town centre

Published: Mon 6th September, 2021

  • Charnwood Borough Council offices at Southfield Road, Loughborough.
    Charnwood Borough Council offices at Southfield Road, Loughborough.

Charnwood Borough Council is looking to explore the feasibility of creating a more efficient and environmentally-friendly replacement office base in Loughborough.

The Council has identified a potential location for new offices and says it is a long-term plan to move to new premises to reduce running costs and prioritise funding on services. It would also reduce the Council’s carbon footprint.

A report is going to Cabinet on September 16 seeking approval to explore the feasibility of creating new offices on Southfield Road Extension car park, about 50 metres from the current offices in Southfield Road.

Cllr Jonathan Morgan, Leader of Charnwood Borough Council, said: “Our current building has served us and the community well for many years.

“However, the pandemic has accelerated modern working practices and as we operate in a much more agile way, we will need less space in the future.

“A more modern, smaller building will also enable us to save money on operating costs which we can use to protect the services which residents value. A new building will also be better for the environment and reduce our carbon footprint, a key priority for the Council.

“This is still in the very early stages, but one site has potential, and it is right we fully explore it before going any further. That means we are not ruling out any other options at this stage.”

The existing Council offices in Southfield Road are also used by partner agencies including the Job Centre, the Coroner’s office, and the Registrar’s office. Part of the building was built in the early 19th Century and is locally listed.

Council meetings are usually held in Woodgate Chambers, which the Council also owns.

Council chief executive Rob Mitchell said: “We have a long-term plan to create a modern, efficient and a more environmentally-friendly building for our customers and colleagues and if we move, we are committed to remaining in Loughborough town centre.

“This is the first step in exploring one possible option but, as ever, we want to be transparent and open with residents about what is happening with their Council.

“We have informed partners who use our buildings of the plans and will continue to engage with them.”

The creation of any new building would enable the sale of the existing office complex. The site is identified as having the potential for 163 homes in the Charnwood Local Plan 2021-37 Pre-Submission Document.

More details are in the Cabinet report.