HEALTH bosses were accused of “conning” residents after a temporary structure won a stay of execution.
Councillors yesterday gave Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust another six months to remove a portable building at the end of a residential street.
The office, which houses 19 staff from the Children and Adolescents Mental Health Service, juts into Acre House Avenue in Lindley.
In 2006, Kirklees Council gave the hospital trust permission to place the portable cabin on the street for three years. One-year extensions were granted in 2009 and 2010.
Health bosses asked the council’s Huddersfield Planning Sub-committee for another two-year extension yesterday.
But Colne Valley Lib Dem Clr Nicola Turner told the meeting: “I feel a little bit conned by the trust.
“If they had come to us in 2006 and said they wanted to stay on the site for six years, we would have turned them down.”
The trust’s agent Alex Robinson, said: “The NHS provides an important service from Acre House. The trust fully understands that the council wants it to move away from Acre House Avenue.”
Ms Robinson added that the trust hoped to move in with Kirklees Children and Young People’s Service in an undisclosed empty office space in the town centre.
She said: “We’re now working in close partnership with Kirklees to bring the two services together. The trust feels a town centre location would be much better.”
Ms Robinson said another two years would give “enough time” for the move.
But councillors demanded the sub-committee force the trust to move the portable cabin immediately.
Lindley Lib Dem Clr Christine Stanfield said: “Extension after extension has been asked for and the residents of Acre House Avenue are fed up.
“The residents recognise the valuable work which is done for young people but this structure is inappropriate in a residential area.
“Temporary does not mean going on for year after year. It should be moved as soon as possible.”
Clr Cahal Burke also spoke against the portable cabin at yesterday’s meeting at Huddersfield Town Hall.
The Lindley Lib Dem said: “The trust has had since 2006 to find an alternative site. In my opinion it’s had enough time.”
Richard Wood, who lives near the portable cabin, told the sub-committee: “Enough is enough. It’s time for the trust to be told that temporary does not mean indefinite.”
Sub-committee members criticised the trust for not finding new office accommodation in the last five years.
Holme Valley South Conservative Clr Ken Sims said: “I remember this coming in front of us in 2006 and the trust gave us their word that it would be temporary.
“I don’t think they’re really trying to find a new site.”
The sub-committee voted nine to four against giving the trust another two years on site.
However, councillors then voted six to two to allow the trust permission to keep the portable cabin for another six months.
Mr Wood spoke of his disappointment at the result.
“I don’t belive this will be sorted out within six months,” he said.