Australian music festival Lost Paradise has been cancelled weeks before it was scheduled to start due to the ongoing bushfire threat in New South Wales.

Organisers of the New Year’s festival, which takes place from December 28 to January 1, said all those who bought tickets would be eligible for refunds, adding that they were working closely with ticketing providers to ensure they are processed as quickly as possible.

People who bought tickets can expect to receive updates on the refund process in the coming days.

A Lost Paradise spokesperson said: “After extensive consultation with the Rural Fire Service, emergency personnel and other key stakeholders, the difficult decision has been made to cancel this year’s Lost Paradise festival.

“Our beautiful home in Sydney’s Central Coast is facing intense and unpredictable fire conditions that are sadly expected to deteriorate. We simply cannot put anyone’s life at risk. We have been working around the clock to explore all possible options to relocate the festival, but it is just not feasible within the time frame.”

The 2018 edition of the event welcomed around 11,000 people to the site in the Glenworth Valley.

Fans across social media have expressed their disappointment with the cancellation, but understand why the decision has been made.

One said: “Definitely the right call! Such a sad time for our country and a bummer as this festival is amazing. Thanks for letting us know this early.”

Another added: “Our thoughts are with you all – a tough call but unfortunately a necessary one.”

Festival organisers concluded: “Thank you to everyone for their care and support. We will be back bigger and better than ever in 2020.”

Image: Veld Music Festival