A pre-school has moved from its community centre home after a dispute over continuing increases in rent.

Little Me Pre-school was based at The Archer Community Centre, in East Street, Braintree, however as of Saturday, the business reopened at larger premises in nearby Manor Street.

Owner of the business, Lisa Smith, said there had been a breakdown in the relationship between the two parties.

Ms Smith said: “We had a whole day of pre-school cancelled at the end of October with only four day’s notice to inform our parents. This was due to The Archer Community Centre double booking.

“This cost me in admin time, having to contact all the parents to let them know their children could not attend pre school because of the hall being double booked. I also had to refund each parent.

“As you can imagine I had a lot of irate parents, who struggled to find alternative childcare.

“The hall should not have been double booked, and this caused our pre-school stress and embarrassment.

“On top of that, we have had to deal with constant increase of rent request, of which we cannot afford.”

Community centre bosses, said the pre-school was given a discounted rate of up to 60 per cent when it joined in 2015 but the rate was gradually increased. They also denied the centre had been double booked.

Ron Ramage, chairman of the Archer Community Trust, said: “The discount was agreed in order to help the business become established, with the understanding that the discount would reduce as the business progressed.

“The pre-school’s initial hiring fees were paid in advance, however subsequent terms have been paid in arrears, so no further discount on top of negotiated fees could be considered appropriate.

“The trustees have always done their utmost to try to be sympathetic to the demands of the pre-school set-up, while also being sensitive to the needs, requests and requirements of other groups and organisations who have hired facilities in parallel with the running of that business.

“The Archer Community Trust is delighted Little Me Pre-school have finally secured their preferred location and the trustees wish the business well in its new permanent home.

“It is fitting for a pre-school to have exclusive facilities and it is certain the business will continue to thrive as it has done at The Archer Centre.”

Little Me Pre-school’s new premises opened on Saturday with an open day.

Ms Smith said: “We had fifty sets of parents attend and all of the children loved it. The facilities here are a lot more suited to our needs.

“We are very excited for the future now.”