A HOUSING trust has been accused of deserting thousands of tenants by moving from Widnes to upmarket Daresbury.
Halton Housing Trust - which is responsible for the borough's remaining council homes - sparked anger from local authority leader Tony McDermott when it announced the move.
He described the move as 'extraordinary' and said: 'They claim to want to 'distance' themselves from Halton Borough Council -fair enough some might say, except that we assured our tenants who live in Widnes and Runcorn that the new Trust would be local, accessible and responsive.
'The Trust have chosen to move to the furthest point possible from both their customers and those who pay their wages.
''Curiouser and Curiouser' as Alice in Wonderland, who lived in Dares-bury, would have said.'
However, trust chief executive, Nick Atkin, defended the decision to relocate to Manor Park.
He said the new business park address would offer the chance for future expansion.
'Every office the public has access to is being given priority. Over half my 230-strong team is based in Widnes,' he said.
Mr Atkin said two new shop units will serve tenants in East Widnes from September and a temporary shop in Queens Avenue will be available while the Ditton office is refurbished.
The team at Runcorn Town Hall is to relocate to Grangeway.