Tax office in Craigavon is set to close

Marlborough House, Craigavon. INPT0213-134gc

Marlborough House, Craigavon. INPT0213-134gc

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Craigavon tax office is set to close by 2018 with staff either being made redundant or moved to a new centre in Belfast.

The news follows an announcement that HM Revenue and Customs is to create a new regional tax centre in Belfast closing many of its satellite offices.

In a statement, HMRC said the Craigavon office at Marlborough House ‘will close on 2017-18’.

Offices in Lisburn, Newry Enniskillen, Coleraine, Derry and Belfast are also to close.

“HMRC is phasing in the moves over five years to allow staff time to make choices for their future and reduce the number of possible redundancies,” said a spokesperson.

The new centre is part of a ten year modernisation programme to create ‘a tax authority fit for the future, committing to high-quality jobs’.

“We cannot currently say more about the location of the new regional centre, because we need to negotiate with landlords and contractors, but it will be in Belfast, with good transport links,” he said.

“HMRC will consult staff and other interested groups on the best way to carry out this transition. Where staff are not based in or near a proposed or existing regional centre, they will be given a range of options and will have time to consider and discuss their future with HMRC.

“Most modern compliance work can be done from any location but HMRC’s investigators and field force remain a mobile workforce able to cover the entire country as and when we need to make contact face-to-face or at people’s premises. There will also be mobile customer services for vulnerable individuals or those with additional needs,” said a spokesperson.

Lin Homer, HMRC’s Chief Executive, said: “HMRC is committed to modern, regional centres serving every region and nation in the UK, with skilled and varied jobs and development opportunities, while also ensuring jobs are spread throughout the UK and not concentrated in London.

“HMRC has too many expensive, isolated and outdated offices. This makes it difficult for us to collaborate, modernise our ways of working, and make the changes we need to transform our service to customers and clamp down further on the minority who try to cheat the system.

“The new regional centre in Belfast will bring our staff together in more modern and cost-effective buildings in an area with lower rent. It will also make a big contribution to the economy of Northern Ireland providing high-quality, skilled jobs and supporting the Government’s commitment to a national recovery that benefits all parts of the UK.” 

“The changes will enable HMRC to give customers the modern services they now expect at a lower cost to the taxpayer, meeting the Government’s challenge for all departments to do more with less.”