BANK workers will today vacate Lloyds Banking Group’s Handbridge site.
Capital House and Bridge House at the Handbridge base are now empty, with The Foundation training centre on the business park expected to be vacated by the end of April.
Workers have transferred across the company’s remaining sites which are Charterhall House, Tower House and Premier House, off Hoole Lane, Douglas House in Foregate Street and Weaver Street.
Lloyds owns the freehold on the two Handbridge buildings which may be sold or let to tenants but there is no indication of future plans. The Foundation training centre is only leased.
Spokesman Mark Elliott said: “The option exists for the company to sell the buildings. Whether it wants to sell in this market or bide its time or get tenants in – all of the options are being considered.”
Speculation is rife among the workforce that Lloyds will sell the building for use as a hotel, apartments or as an elderly persons’ home.
The bank says it too much office space for the 2,500-strong workforce which has reduced in number as a result of Lloyds taking over HBOS and eliminating duplication between the two companies.
However, while some roles have disappeared from Chester others have been created. Before Christmas it was announced 340 jobs would be created by the end of 2010 as part of a shake-up.
These will be in administration, IT, collections and recoveries. Some of the extra jobs earmarked for Chester will be redeployed from locations in Yorkshire, home to the Halifax, owned by Lloyds, but other jobs will be entirely new roles.