AN ENERGY firm has announced plans to move out of Hampshire in favour of a new building in Reading.

SSE, which has an office in Winchester Road, Basingstoke, said it has entered into an agreement to lease a newly-constructed building in the Berkshire town.

It said the firm will take possession of the building in January, with staff moving in from the end of next year following interior works.

SSE said all 600 staff will move out of Basingstoke, with the majority moving to the new premises. There are no redundancies planned as part of the move.

The new building will also house staff from another SSE office in Reading, and one in Thatcham.

Alistair Phillips-Davies, Chief Executive of SSE, said: “We have looked extensively for the right building in the right location to provide a high quality environment from which to support efficient operations for customers and provide the right base for our extensive activities across the south-east of England; and we have found it in Number 1 Forbury Place.

“The new building gives us the space to bring together over 1,900 SSE employees in one place and provide a modern, flexible working environment.

“SSE is a major service provider in the south-east of England and this is an excellent opportunity for us to bring together our staff from across the company in a new central hub from which to build further our business in this economically vital part of the UK.”

The company owns the Winchester Road office and it recently underwent a refurbishment.

A spokesman for SSE said that it will look at a range of options for the building's future, including putting it on the market for let or sale, and that it is confident that the investment it has made in developing the site has increased its attractiveness for marketing its future use.