Suffolk

Legal and General to cut 140 insurance jobs in Ipswich

Friars Bridge Road, Ipswich
Image caption Legal and General is closing its office on Friars Bridge Road, which is next to the Ipswich Buddhist Centre

An insurance firm is cutting 140 jobs in Ipswich and moving the work to Birmingham and Sussex.

Legal & General said its Ipswich office in Friars Bridge Road would close by next May.

The Unite union called it a "kick in the teeth to the loyal and experienced workforce in Ipswich".

The insurance firm said it was to create a single household claims office in Birmingham, while customer service jobs would move to Hove.

Legal & General said it followed restructuring of its businesses across the UK in 2013.

Industrial action

Ian Methven, Unite's regional officer, called for the company to "reverse this unnecessary decision".

"This follows substantial job losses across the country by the insurance giant in the last year and today's announcement is a kick in the teeth to the loyal and experienced workforce in Ipswich," he said.

"The Ipswich work, which is customer-facing, will move to the Hove and Birmingham offices, but the workforce at these two sites won't be increased to reflect the number of job losses.

"These job losses will affect customers across the whole of the country and not just in East Anglia."

A Legal & General spokesman said about 120 roles would be split equally between Hove and Birmingham and Ipswich staff would be offered relocation packages and there may be a chance to move to its Suffolk Life pensions operation on Princes Street in Ipswich.

"We are confident these changes will reduce complexity, help us to improve our overall efficiency and enhance customer experience," he said.

Unite said industrial action "can't be ruled out at this stage" while the firm said it was beginning a consultation with workers.

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