It has been revealed City of London officials have received “personal abuse and threats” in relation to the licensing of a tea hut.

The licence for a tea hut within Epping Forest in Hill Wood, High Beech, will be put up for offer when it expires in December.

The corporation has cited a need to get “the best possible level of service and return for the facility" after budget cuts of 12.5 per cent over the past three years.

A City of London spokesman said: “While the majority of commentators on the tea hut issue have been lawful expressions of strong feeling, sadly there has been a small but worrying minority who have descended into personal abuse and even threats.”

The corporation has not revealed the nature or number of the threats or announced whether legal action will be taken.

A small delegation of supporters will deliver a petition against the tendering process with around 7,000 signatures to the Guild Hall in London on Friday.

More on this story in this week's Epping Forest Guardian - out Thursday.