The Land Registry department last week announced plans to close five offices and threaten 1,100 jobs.
The plans, which are part of the agency’s “accelerated transformation” programme, mean that 1,400 staff face either losing their job or being privatised.
There are 5,700 people working for the department in England and Wales.
Offices in Peterborough, Portsmouth, Croydon, Stevenage, and Tunbridge Wells will close by the end of 2011. Sites in Plymouth will merge into one. The London headquarters faces being closed down.
“This is a serious attack,” says Dave Franklin, of the PCS civil service workers’ union group executive in Land Registry. “And management say that it is only phase one.
“The Land Registry is being treated as a profit-making company rather than a public service and being forced to make cuts.
“Gus O’Donnell, the head of the civil service, claims that ‘we’re all in it together’, but the jobs of senior management are not on the line.
“The PCS is committed to opposing these plans.
“We will be holding a series of members’ meetings across the country alongside the launch of an indicative ballot at the beginning of next month.”