Council sells off buildings

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COUNCIL bosses have agreed to sell off a number of buildings which they say are surplus to requirements.

Hartlepool Borough Council has agreed to sell the Brooklyn Day Centre, in Grange Road, the former Somersby Close family resource centre and a former office in Station Lane.

All of the buildings are empty with staff being relocated over recent months and they have been tested on the property market before being sold.

The confidential terms for each sale have not been released by the council.

Finance chiefs say the sales will help the council support the budget and also save the local authority thousands of pounds in maintenance and revenue costs.

The council needs to make savings of £15m over the next three years from its £90m budget.

Brooklyn Day Centre was used by the child and adult service department as an office but staff have since been relocated to Sovereign House, in Brenda Road.

Selling the property – which is subject to confirmation that no other council department requires it – will also save the council £10,487 a year.

It was agreed to market the former Somersby Close family resource centre in February last year after the property became “surplus” to requirements for the child and adult services department.

The staff have already moved to the Star Centre, in Flint Walk.

Closing the property will save the council £17,406 a year in revenue savings.

Meanwhile, it has also been agreed to sell 85 Station Lane, in Seaton Carew, which has also been used by child and adult service staff as an office.

They have now moved to an office in Church Street.

A report said selling the building will generate £32,957 of savings a year.

The properties have been marketed over the past year and the cut off for informal tenders was early December.

Labour councillor Robbie Payne, portfolio holder for finance and procurement, approved the plans at a recent meeting.

Coun Payne said: “The buildings we have disposed of are surplus to requirements.

“It is part of the council’s strategy of reducing its portfolio of assets.

“The buildings have been tested against the market and subject to the cabinet budget strategy to balance the books.

“This is why they have been disposed of.”

The sales are all part of the council’s business transformation programme, which aimed to make savings and streamline services.