A FESTIVAL of music and comedy which was due to take place in north Oxfordshire next week has been cancelled just days after being announced.

Top comedians Jimmy Carr, Matt Richardson, Hal Cruttenden and Andrew Maxwell were among the stars set to play the PopUp Picnic in Poundon, near Bicester.

Organisers yesterday revealed Mr Carr as a surprise headliner but decided to cancel it the same day. The Oxford Mail was informed only after we contacted organisers for more information.

They said today that the event has been cancelled after a sponsor pulled out.

The event, which would have also seen shows in Surrey, Kent and Cambridge, was being billed as the country’s first socially-distanced live event.

Read again: PopUp picnic announced for Bicester

Ticket-holders were told to book ‘bubbles’ for up to six people in the safety of their own two-metre ‘safe zones’.

It would also have featured tribute acts, food and drink.

Oxford Mail:

A statment from organiser Toby Darvill today said: "It is with great regret that we have had to cancel the Popup Picnic 2020 UK tour due to the unforeseen and last minute withdrawal of one of our sponsors.

"Everyone working on the tour was really excited for our first event in Oxfordshire next week - the line-up was amazing and we had loads of interest from the general public, who are keen to get back outdoors and have (safe) fun over the summer holidays - so we are gutted it won't be taking place as planned, and we really hope we can bring the PopUp Picnics back at a later date.

"We can confirm that everyone who purchased a ticket for the tour has been contacted and will be fully refunded. And we would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who worked with us on putting the tour together, including our team, contractors and artists.

"Our priority right now, is to ensure they are supported. We'd also like to thank the local media in Oxford for their support. 

Read more: Theatres welcome massive government lifeline to arts

The Oxford Mail has requested more details and the identity of the sponsor who pulled out.

Oxford Mail: Publicising the event in today's Oxford Mail and this week's Oxford Times, Mr Darvill, said: “Most of us have been stuck indoors for the last four months, watching in desperation as our summer holiday and festival plans have been cancelled one after the other.

"We want to drag everyone out of the doldrums and get us all back where we belong this summer – in a field on a farm, enjoying great food, belly laughs and loads of fun with friends and family."

Go to popup-picnic.com for refunds.