A festive drive-in cinema that was previously told they could stay open under Tier 4 restrictions has been told it must shut.

Organisers of the Celestial Cinema festive drive-in, which has been entertaining families in a Covid-safe way for three weeks, say they are "devastated" that Buckinghamshire Council has told them they need to close.

They said they are in ongoing talks with the council and the government for "clear guidance" on what to do moving forward but at this stage they have not received official notice to close yet. 

The drive-in, which was being held in a field off the A40 in Holtspur, was still due to be showing Christmas films like The Greatest Showman, Love Actually and The Holiday until December 27, but their future is now unclear. 

Celestial Cinema say they are doing "whatever it takes to remain open". If anything changes an official email will be sent out to all ticket holders. 

Organisers say the drive-in is contact free, with food and drink ordered through an app and sound from the films received through car radios.

They add that they were previously told they could stay open under all Tiers, but they have reportedly been asked to close because it is categorised as a cinema.

They say they will "continue to debate these points with Buckinghamshire Council".

In an official statement, Lucy Beckwith, from Celestial Cinema, said: "For the last three weeks, the Drive In Experience has brought joy to the faces of hundreds of families.

"We have taken every precaution necessary and take the safety of our staff and guests incredibly seriously.

"After initially being told we can remain open, we are devastated by today’s news.

"We have been proud to have created jobs for so many in the local community and we are truly heartbroken that this could be taken away from them so close to Christmas.

"We fail to see any reason for the closure of Celestial Cinema, whilst drive-through food chains are open right across the country.

"This feels unjust and I will debate the points until we have had a final word.

"We will do everything we can to save Christmas for those families who have supported us and believed in our brand."

Organisers say that with drive-through food venues like McDonald's, Costa and KFC allowed to stay open under Tier 4, they should be too.

They have urged residents to support them in their campaign to reopen.

A spokesman for Buckinghamshire Council said: "It is with much regret that we have had to say to the Celestial Cinema that they cannot operate at the moment.

"The Government guidelines are clear that if you are in a Tier 4 area, you must not leave your home unless you have a reasonable excuse (e.g. for work or education purposes) and you must avoid any unnecessary travel.

"These are the regulations we are currently having to live with in Buckinghamshire."