A POPULAR visitor attraction in the Chilterns announced the cancellation of one of its landmark events.

Chiltern Open Air Museum (COAM) has rescued and restored local buildings for 45 years, including a 1940s Prefab from Amersham and Iron Age settlement reconstruction, and it's a popular location for films and TV series. 

Now the museum has had to cancel its annual Halloween Spectacular event on October 28, leading to speculation about future funding of the attraction, which gets revenue from events and filming at its Chalfont St Giles site, for which the leasehold is owned by the developer Comer Homes

Chiltern Open Air Museum said in a public social media post on Friday: “It is with great sadness that we have to announce the cancellation of our Halloween Spectacular.

"Despite many years of us holding special events at COAM, the development company who own the freehold to our site have now decided that activities like our Halloween Spectacular and filming on site are in breach of our leasehold.

“They have also blocked the access to the field we have used for our overflow parking.

“We know that many of you love our events and have been visiting regularly and we’re so grateful for your support." 

The museum promised refunds to anyone, who had bought tickets, but asked "some time" for the refunds to be processed. 

The developer Comer Homes has expressed their willingness for the Halloween event "on numerous occasions," company said.

Comer Homes said in a statement: "Approval for the event was provided, in writing, at 9am on Thursday morning.

"The event was cancelled at 9am on Friday morning, stating the refusal of access to the overflow car park, however, we received no contact, nor request, from COAM in the time in-between or at any time beforehand to request additional parking or that a lack of access would put the event in jeopardy.

"Had we been informed of this or any other issue, we would have been open to provide our support, where possible, and work together to ensure the event could go ahead." 

Instead of the cancelled event, the museum will run family activities during October half-term break.

“Our programme of events, filming and other activities generate a large proportion of our income and enable us to care for our buildings, support our conservation work, carryout educational activities and support our community so we are devastated by their actions,” the museum added. 

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