Professional body to close its Yorkshire office

The Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) is set to close its Yorkshire office, according to reports.

The office which is located in Leeds, is one of six regional bases that won’t re-open following the coronavirus lockdown, along with those in Newcastle, Salford, Nottingham, Belfast and Cardiff.

The organisation said it will only retain its London, Birmingham and Edinburgh offices, with plans in place for this to happen in October.

RICS’ Leeds office had been in the Northern Terrace, Queen Square Court at Leeds Beckett University.

RICS UK managing director Matthew Howell told Property Week: “The nature of these smaller offices does not give us the type of space we will need for the new future of work. This will not affect the ability of our team to fully support our professionals.”

Howell said that RICS will move to a digital approach to supporting its members and a spokesperson has confirmed this move will not lead to any redundancies.

This approach follows an announcement in April that the body had asked around 30% of its UK-based employees to go on furlough.

Alongside this, chief executive Sean Tompkins volunteered a temporary pay cut of 15% which was matched by RICS non-executive chairs, while executives took a voluntary 12.5% reduction of their salary.