A town centre tower block housing Slough’s jobcentre could be sold off by the council in an effort to balance its books.

Leaders at debt-ridden Slough Borough Council are set to sell the Upton Lodge office block in the town centre and land earmarked for the ‘Stoke Wharf' housing development.

Plans say the sales will help Slough become a council that ‘lives within its means, balances the budget, and delivers best value for taxpayers and service users'.

The two proposed sell-offs are the latest in a programme of property sales aimed at raising some £600 million to help pay off the council’s debts. Slough Borough Council effectively went bankrupt in 2021 and is currently in debt by some £437million.

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Upton Lodge on Yew Tree Road was among the council properties earmarked for sale by Slough Borough Council leaders in January last year. The council bought it for £5.95 million in 2018, and documents say it has raised almost £2 million from letting offices out since then, including to the jobcentre.

But plans say the cost to the council of servicing its debts outweigh the income it makes from letting out Upton Lodge. And they say the value of the building has fallen since then.

Officers also say there is less than four years left on the lease on the building, and it is unlikely that its tenants would want to renew it once this runs out.

Council officers criticised the decision by their predecessors to buy the building in the first place, and said there are no ‘accessible records’ to show the decision has been made on ‘robust evidence'.

They said: “It is not clear from the information provided what professional advice was taken to support the acquisition nor how that decision was taken.”

Ten prospective buyers bid for the building, according to council documents – and council leaders are now being asked to approve the sale to one of them.

But the amount that the council could make from the sale – and the identity of the proposed buyer – has been kept confidential.

Meanwhile a full report into the proposed sale of the land at ‘Stoke Wharf’ has not yet been published. Slough Borough Council had entered into a partnership with developers Muse and the Canal Rivers Trust to build some 312 homes at the end of the Grand Union Canal.

But it also plans to sell off the land it owns at the site as part of its asset sales programme.

Councillors on the leading cabinet’s asset sales sub committee are set to consider the proposed sales at a meeting on Wednesday, July 3. They will then ask the rest of the cabinet to approve their decision on Monday, July 15.

Government commissioners appointed to oversee council spending say the sales are ‘of significant importance to the council’s financial recovery'.