The owner of a popular tea hut facing an uncertain future will learn his fate in August, it has been confirmed.

There has been widespread public outcry at a decision to put the running of hut in High Beach out to tender, despite it being in the family of current manager Bradley Melton for 84 years.

A petition calling for Mr Melton to stay in charge of the business has been signed by more than 8,000 people.

But the City of London Corporation is pressing ahead with its plans and has announced the deadline for applications is July 18, with a decision due sometime in August.

Meanwhile, Mr Melton said he did a roaring trade during the visit of the Tour de France with a traditional English summer menu, featuring scones and strawberries and cream.

Fore more on this story see Thursday's Epping Forest Guardian.