The neglect of a once-popular green space is deterring people from using it, it is claimed. 

Lucton’s field, which belongs to the Epping Forest College, was 10 years ago part of plans to provide sports facilities as part of a major development on the Borders Lane campus.

Due to a lack of funding, the college were unable to proceed to Phase 2 in the development and the site has since become overgrown.

Loughton and District Historical Society member Sue Taylor said: “I am saddened by the way the college has neglected Lucton's Field in recent years. When the college kept the grass cut, people used Lucton's Field as their local park, walking their dogs, taking short cuts across the grass and letting their children go out to play there.

“Whatever the college decides to do with the land, I do hope they will reserve some of it for community use as that would be a wonderful way for them to give something back to our local community.”

Chairman of governors at Epping Forest College, Will Breare-Hall, said the College shares the disappointment of local residents and that it has now begun considering options to upgrade the facilities on its playing field, for the benefit of both students and the local community.

He added: “As the college does not have sufficient funds to undertake such an upgrade on its own it will need to consider how it uses its capital assets effectively, and in so doing will be keen to involve the local community in the process of determining the future use of its playing field.”

Epping Forest College has said the process and significant progree is not expected until Spring 2015.