THE organiser of a community picnic has spoken of his sadness that the event will not be returning this year after running for ten years.

The Picnic in the Park, in Kirby-le-Soken, is not returning this year after police were called to the incident last year.

Organiser David Payne, 80, has been the main organiser of the event for the past decade.

He uses about £5,000 of his own money to fund the event and relies on ticket sales to pay himself back.

The event takes place at Glebe Field, next to St Michael’s Church and each year hundreds attend for an afternoon and evening of live music and family fun.

Money raised at the event would then be donated to the church and a chosen charity.

“We have whole generations of families attend and the feedback from everyone has been entirely positive,” said Mr Payne.

“It is essentially a community event but being so successful I have been able to include the church and a nominated charity to share any profits.

“I talk about profits but but I am personally liable for any losses so all the expenditure comes out of my own pocket.”

However, Mr Payne says last year there was a domestic incident between a man and woman at the Picnic in the Park which escalated to include other members of the family.

“Somewhat prematurely someone called the police but by the time they attended the parties had left the site,” he said.

“Word got round to the church and when I lodged my formal request to hire the site again I was told the church council were considering it.

“I was then told my request had been refused taking into account the incident and the lack of security.”

Mr Payne says he is disappointed the Picnic in the Park will not be coming to Kirby again this year.

“I did find another site and agreed with the owner to use it for Picnic in the Park,” he added.

“But unfortunately the owner rang me three weeks later and said we couldn’t use the field.”

Despite the setbacks Mr Payne is hoping to stage the event next year and urging anyone who can help organise a last-minute Picnic in the Park this July to come forward.

If you are able to help by providing land for the Picnic in the Park you can contact Mr Payne on 01255 671749 or email