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Page last updated at 10:09 GMT, Wednesday, 7 April 2010 11:09 UK
New West Dorset District Council office plans on show
Artist's impression of the new council offices on Charles Street - view from South Street. Courtesy of West Dorset District Council.
Artist's impression of the new council offices - view from South Street

West Dorset District Council are to hold a series of 'drop in' sessions to explain why it needs to move to smaller, cheaper to run offices.

The four 'informal' meetings aim to demonstrate that new offices in Charles Street, Dorchester, could save taxpayers around £145,000 a year.

They say this equates to over £3 off a Band D council tax bill of 124.80.

Council Leader Robert Gould will host the sessions in the council chamber at Stratton House.

Guided tours

Members of the public will be able to put questions to senior officers and view the latest plans for the new offices, which collectively will be around half the size of the current campus.

There will also be guided tours around the current buildings, which were not designed to be used as offices.

Councillor Gould said: "We [West Dorset District Council] are committed to an ongoing dialogue and holding public events.

Artist's impression of the proposed shopping area on Charles Street, Dorchester. Courtesy of West Dorset District Council.
Artist's impression of the proposed shopping area on Charles Street

"We think opening our doors to people in this way is an excellent way to listen to what residents think, and answer any questions they may have about the scheme.

"Senior officers will be present to explain why it will be cheaper to move, than stay in Stratton House.

"Hopefully, by then the planning application for the whole Charles Street scheme - including a new supermarket, shops, car park, hotel, affordable homes and public toilets - will have been submitted.

"We can talk people through those details too, if they are interested."

The dates for the sessions are:

Thursday 8 April from 0930 to 1200, Monday 12 April from 1400 to 1630, Saturday 17 April from 1000 to 1200 and Monday 19 April from 1730 to 1930.

Residents can pre-book a place and submit their questions in advance, or just turn up on the day.

West Dorset District Council has also produced a leaflet explaining why it plans to downsize its offices. Copies are available at district council office receptions in Dorchester, and at Dorchester Tourist Information Centre.

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