Tory fury as ministers drop pledge to move civil servants from London

Ministers are said to have made the decision to axe proposals to move jobs to Birmingham and Newcastle.

More than £1million has already been spent on the two projects. The findings were revealed in a report from the Government Property Agency.

MP John Stevenson, who chairs the Northern Research Group of Conservative MPs from “red wall” seats, described the move as a “step backwards”.

He said: “I expect a full explanation on Parliament’s return and alternative policy initiatives to ensure that the movement of civil servants does proceed.”

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Tory MPs in the North and Midlands fear failure to deliver on levelling-up will put them at risk of losing their seats at the next general election.

Andy Street, Tory Mayor of the West Midlands, blamed the trend toward working from home.

A Government spokesperson suggested the report had been misinterpreted. It was “commit­ted” to the new hubs.

Some 1,150 roles would go to Birmingham by March 2025 and 850 had already moved.

Around 350 more jobs would be relocated to Tyneside by 2025 on top of the 400 already relocated.

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