CIVIL service jobs in Weymouth could be privatised as the government moves to sell off the Land Registry.

Ministers have unveiled a series of options for the Land Registry and a consultation process is underway.

The 150-year-old body, which records land and property ownership in England and Wales, employs around 4,500 civil servants nationally. More than 200 people work at Weymouth District Land Registry in Cumberland Drive.

The consultation process will assess whether the Land Registry should be split between a new company which will provide its services and a separate hub responsible for its policy work.

The options include turning the Land Registry into a joint venture between the government and a private company, or letting a private company run it but overseen by the government.

The Department of Business, Innovation and Skills said that no decision had been made on full privatisation.

Unions say turning the Land Registry into a government company is the first step to full privatisation.

General secretary of the PCS union Mark Serwotka described the Land Registry as “a well-respected and trusted 150-year-old institution.”

He said: “Any perceived benefits in taking what is inevitably the first step towards privatising the Land Registry are overwhelmingly outweighed by the huge risks involved.”