Plans to move thousands of Civil Service jobs outside London to Greater Manchester accelerated

A target to move 22,000 Civil Service roles away from capital by 2030 has been accelerated. Credit: PA Images

Plans to relocate more than 20,000 Civil Service jobs outside London will be brought forward to 2027, the Government has said.

A target to move 22,000 Civil Service roles away from capital by 2030 has been accelerated, with plans also to open second headquarters for several departments in Aberdeen, Darlington and Greater Manchester.

More than 300 jobs will also be located in Wrexham in Wales, as ministers said it was a sign of the Government’s commitment to levelling up.

Cabinet Office minister John Glen said: "We are taking the long-term decisions to move government roles out of London so more people from our great towns and cities can play a direct role in changing this country for the better.

"We have already gone above and beyond our targets, bringing the best talent from every corner of the UK into government roles, to make our civil service more efficient and representative of the wider public."

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The move follows the high-profile decision by the Treasury to open an economic campus in Darlington in 2021.

The Government has said the shifting of roles outside London will deliver economic benefits to regions across the country, while also strengthening the union.

Under the plans, the Department for Business and Trade will open a second headquarters in Darlington, while the Department for Science will open one in Greater Manchester.

Aberdeen, at the centre of North Sea fossil fuel production, will become the second headquarters of the Department for Energy Security alongside Salford.

In Wrexham, the Department for Work and Pensions will recruit to fill 270 roles while the Ministry of Justice will put 50 officials in the Welsh city.

Moving civil servants from Whitehall has long been part of the levelling up agenda, with more than 16,000 moved so far. But it has not been without criticism. The cross-party Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee warned earlier this year that the Government has provided limited detail to justify the moves while also exaggerating the success.