Probation workers will be kicked out of their Kingston town centre offices to make way for Surbiton’s controversial new free school, fuelling rumours the service could soon be based two boroughs away.

April 2015: Premises for new Surbiton Primary Academy found - in Kingston

Anonymous sources raised fears the key justice service could be moved to Hounslow, forcing some Kingston offenders into a three-hour round trip for appointments.

Kingston’s probation service is based at 45 High Street – next door to the Swan House school site – and is one of the buildings the Education Funding Agency (EFA) bought with a view to opening the Surbiton Primary Academy in September.

A Department for Education (DfE) spokeswoman confirmed the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) had been told its lease would not be renewed in September, and that it knew the probation service would have to move.

The spokeswoman declined to say how much the building was bought for.

A Ministry of Justice spokesman said: “The lease on this building will not be renewed when it expires later this year.

“We are actively seeking alternative accommodation and will continue to provide probation services in this area.”

A probation service source, who asked not to be named, said: “We were told we were moving a while ago, but then told we weren’t because the office space was too expensive.

“[The Government] obviously have to say they are moving us now a school is going next door.

“They don’t want the bad publicity of that.”

More than half of Kingston-based probation officers went on strike in 2013 over cost-cutting measures that saw private companies bid for contracts to supervise offenders.

The source added: “My guess is we’ll end up in Hounslow because it’s probably cheaper.

“We are in the dark. It looks like costs will be more important than focusing on rehabilitation.”

A central probation service spokesman said he did not know about a plan to move the Kingston workers.

He claimed the Ministry of Justice was still negotiating with the current landlord about its lease, which ends in September.

The Kingston, Hounslow and Richmond offices are already affiliated with a central hub in Hounslow.

Plans for the school have already come under fire from politicians and parents who say the fact it has no playing fields, is on a main road and is not in Surbiton should make the DfE think again.

Kingston and Surbiton MP James Berry said: “I have been looking with the EFA for a school site actually in Surbiton. There is better and I definitely would not have bought what I think is an absolute lemon of a school site.”

Kingston Liberal Democrat leader Liz Green said: “You couldn’t make it up. It is a completely inappropriate site for a school anyway and now it is either going to be based next to a probation office or forcing them into another location that might not be acceptable.”