A nursery has been told to shut down by the end of the year, leaving parents who rely on the centre “devastated”.

Under 1 Roof nursery has claimed it has been told to leave its site in Woolwich before the end of the year, after being served an eviction notice by its landlord.

The nursery is based in a warehouse on Armstrong Road, having been given planning permission by Greenwich Council to open on the site in January this year, after moving from Skeffington Street.

However, Matt Milchard, director and founder of Under 1 Roof, said that a dispute with the nursery’s neighbour has led to the group being asked to leave.

Mr Milchard told the Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS): “Our neighbour, since day one, hasn’t wanted us there and has tried everything he can to stop us moving in. Once we moved in, he tried everything he could to get us kicked out.

"This includes unsubstantiated reports to Ofsted, unsubstantiated reports to planning and building control, anyone he thought would listen to try and catch us out.”

The nursery founder said Under 1 Roof operates in its warehouse through an agreement with BGGH Asset, who possess the building as tenants of the leaseholder, Bluepuffin Estates.

He added that the nursery’s neighbour, TFI Concepts, has since contacted Bluepuffin to escalate the attempts to evict the nursery.

County court documents show that Bluepuffin has asked BGGH Asset to vacate the warehouse as the original lease did not permit a children’s nursery to operate in it.

Mr Milchard said: “The head lessor has bullied our landlord and said, ‘If you don’t kick them out before Christmas, I’m confiscating your building’, and because our landlord is scared that he’s going to lose his building, he’s been forced to do it. When he gave me the letter, he was almost in tears.”

He added: “Unless we turn this around, and obviously we will fight until the last minute, we’re closing at Christmas.

"That means 70 families will have to find childcare elsewhere, and frankly there just isn’t any, and also 40 people would lose their jobs just before Christmas… It’s heartbreaking.”

The nursery founder said the court case between BGGH Asset and Bluepuffin has been halted since an agreement had been made to evict the nursery before the end of the year.

He said he was also given a letter by the leaseholder in September to say that the outdoor play area on the site had been unlawfully created.

He added: “They destroyed our nursery garden. On a Sunday morning, they sent the bulldozers in.

"They literally knocked the garden down, got angle grinders to all the fences and left it in a pile of rubble. So when our kids came in Monday morning, they thought they were being punished because their garden had literally been destroyed.”

Jenifer Ordonez, 36, is a parent living in Thamesmead who has relied on Under 1 Roof for seven years, having sent both of her children there.

She said she first became aware of the issues the nursery was facing when the outdoor play area was removed.

Ms Ordonez told the LDRS: “When the news broke, you can imagine the devastation of the parents. We’re facing this six weeks before Christmas, and especially when you take into consideration where we are. The majority of schools in the Royal Arsenal area are already oversubscribed.”

She added: “We are in a situation where we don’t know what to do. In the worst case scenario, I might have to take some annual leave or even unpaid leave until we figure it out.”

The Berkeley Group, who sold a 999-year lease to the warehouse on Armstrong Road to Bluepuffin, told the LDRS: “Berkeley recognises the valuable service that Under 1 Roof provides to the community of Woolwich and have been working alongside them seeking to persuade the long leaseholder Bluepuffin to reverse their decision. Unfortunately, Berkeley has no power to stop the eviction of Under 1 Roof and would be sorry to see them leave.”

Bluepuffin Estates and BGGH Asset were approached for comment but had not responded at the time of publication. TFI Concepts declined the opportunity to provide a statement.