Tories announce historic HQ move

The Conservative Party has announced that it is ready to move out of its London headquarters in Smith Square, Westminster.

The party has now signed the lease for its new base above a Starbucks cafe in nearby Victoria Street and will complete the move after the June local council and European elections.

The Tories have been based at Conservative Central Office since the 1950s but wanted more modern offices.

The move will reportedly raise up to £6 million of badly needed funds for the party.

Liam Fox, the Conservative Party co-chairman, said: "We are very pleased to be announcing the party's move to 25 Victoria Street.

"The new building will provide the Conservative Party with modern, purpose-built accommodation and a superb working environment for staff to campaign and win forthcoming elections at local, national and European levels."

The party stated it is keeping the lease on Central Office as an investment. The building is in a prime central London location and may be turned into luxury flats.

The decision to relocate followed Michael Howard's appointment as Tory leader last year.

The Labour Party moved from Walworth Road to Millbank Tower ahead of its 1997 elections and has now moved to Old Queen Street.