Newham Council today decided it would move 2,000 of its back-office staff to the Royal Docks.

It will move to Development Securities' and Standard Life's Building 1000 off Royal Albert Way next April. It said the move would ‘improve the council's ability to serve the people of the borough’.

Only back office staff, currently dispersed across 24 buildings in the borough, will move to the new 240,000 sq ft building occupying 161,000 sq ft of space and sub-leasing the rest. Council meetings will continue to be held at either East Ham or West Ham Town Hall.

The deal is a boost for Dev Secs and Standard Life which have struggled to let Building 1000 since it was speculatively built in 2004. The rent has not been disclosed.

Chris Wood, Newham's interim chief executive, said it made the decision after a meeting of the full council today. He said the move would provide ‘staff faced with working in increasingly inferior office accommodation’ with modern facilities. He said all of the current buildings the staff are occupied in would require expensive improvement to keep them in a ‘minimum habitable state’.

The council said it would finance the purchase through special borrowing arrangements available to local authorities, by funds generated from internal efficiency savings and the sale of redundant freehold buildings.

Knight Frank and Actium Consult is advising Newham.