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HMRC formally opens regional centre

HM Revenue and Customs’ (HMRC) Birmingham regional centre and UK Government hub has been formally opened by Jim Harra, HMRC’s first permanent secretary and chief executive.

The state-of-the-art building at 3 Arena Central, situated just off Birmingham’s Centenary Square and adjacent to the recently redeveloped Birmingham Municipal Bank, is home to 4,600 civil servants, including around 3,500 from HMRC.

Joining them at the 22,500 m2 office are civil servants from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and Valuation Office Agency (VOA).

Spread across 13 floors, the modern and inclusive working environment will enable improved collaboration and smarter working.

Jim Harra said: “This development is an important part of HMRC’s transformation into a modern and digitally-advanced tax authority and cements our position as an important contributor to the economy and communities in and around Birmingham and the West Midlands.

“The inclusive and flexible working environment has brought our people together and will create greater opportunities for collaboration to make it easier to deliver great services to our customers.”

The Birmingham Lord Mayor, Cllr Maureen Cornish, was also in attendance, as were Dame Jayne-Anne Gadhia (chair of the HMRC Board), Angela MacDonald (HMRC’s deputy chief executive and second permanent secretary), Aneen Blackmore (VOA’s chief corporate services officer), and Gemma Brown (DWP’s deputy director of counter fraud, compliance and debt).

Maureen Cornish said: “Seeing HMRC and the UK Government show their commitment to Birmingham with the new hub, right in the heart of one of the city’s newest developments, is a real endorsement for Birmingham and its vibrant business sector.”

Following the opening of the Regional Centre, HMRC will maintain a presence at their other West Midlands office at Telford Plaza, which is home to close to 750 employees.