Sheffield council’s £17,000 bill.... for chairs

Coun Andrew Sangar outside Moorfoot building, where �26,000 has been spent on new tables and chairs for council offices
Coun Andrew Sangar outside Moorfoot building, where �26,000 has been spent on new tables and chairs for council offices
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Hard-pressed households are footing a hefty bill for the comfort of Sheffield Council.

A Freedom of Information Act request has revealed that £26,000 has been splashed out on new furniture for its Moorfoot offices in just one year.

Of that, £17,000 was spent on 230 chairs - equating to around £73 each.

Had IKEA’s plan for a Sheffield store not been held up the council might have been able to save money with the Swedish brand, where office chairs start at £13.

Coun Andrew Sangar, Liberal Democrat spokesman for finance, said: “Local residents will be furious that, at a cost of £75 a chair, their tax has been poured into plush furniture for swanky council offices.

“When Labour politicians were attempting to defend the millions they were wasting on offices, they tried to claim that these funds were for essential works only.

“These latest revelations make it clear that they simply weren’t being open and honest with local people.”

Refurbishment of the Moorfoot building in the city centre is expected to have cost around £8million by the time it is completed. More cash is also being spent on work on Sheffield Town Hall and council offices in Howden House.

Coun Sangar added: “It’s becoming clearer by the day that important services like libraries could be kept open, if bosses were only willing to make sacrifices from their pet projects.”

A spokesman for Sheffield Council said: “The refurbishment of Moorfoot is part of the council’s Office Accommodation Strategy that was approved three years ago and gained all-party support at the time, as the council aimed to avoid future costs and introduce more efficient working practises.

“The council intends to rationalise the leased accommodation we occupy across the city in 26 different locations and concentrate on three key sites that we own, including Moorfoot where around 2,600 staff will be re-located.

“This is estimated to save the Council around £2.4million a year.”