An online row has broken out over the BBC Countryfile's Christmas in the Park event near Malmesbury – attended by 13,000 but damned by a number who grumbled that it didn’t feel much like Christmas.

Fed-up fans took to Facebook and Twitter to complain that the event was “a rip off”, “totally disappointing”, it wasn’t Christmassy and there was too much mud.

But organisers have hit back, explaining that mud is what you get in the country when it's been raining and they did warn eventgoers about it.

A handful lodged complaints about the three-day event at Charlton Park on the programme’s Facebook page.

Lisa Breeze wrote: “The summer one was amazing, this was a total let down. Nothing Christmassy about to buy, hoping to feel Christmassy and instead total disappointment. Took longer to drive there then walk around.”

Rae Elizabeth Piff from Cheltenham wrote: “Disappointing and for £32.50 felt it was too expensive. Shopping marquee full of the same old stuff… I was hoping to buy Christmas decorations and more country themed craft type goods. Best food was the Asian stand and the chaps serving were excellent.

And Rebecca Roberts posted: “Just returned and this was something I’d been looking forward to for a long time. I was so so disappointed. More food concessions then anything else, only spent about an hour and a half there and that was wandering around twice.

"Nothing Christmasy to buy like everyone else was hopping to come and feel festive and pick up some beautiful hand crafted Christmas gifs and decorations instead I feel like I’ve wasted money and been totally let down.”

Another, Helena Townley, complained to The Sun newspaper that “there was no carol singing”.

But a photographer who was also at the event said, “It wasn’t disastrous and there was carol singing. People have complained about the mud but I noticed that some of them didn’t take boots, even though the BBC had been saying on the radio that it had been raining and they should take boots. And the organisers had put down wood chippings to provide walkways over the mud.

"Obviously in December if it has been raining there is mud, it’s in the country, when it rains in the country there is mud.

A BBC spokesman said:"Countryfile Christmas in the Park’s ticket prices were in line with other similar events in the UK and attracted over 13,000 visitors - but due to the outdoor nature of the event, rainfall did cause some areas of the park to be muddy underfoot. We advised visitors to bring appropriate footwear however we apologise to anybody who found the terrain difficult.”

With so many attending Countryfile Christmas in the Park, organisers rated it a success for the UK’s most-watched factual TV programme’s open-air event.

“It’s a good job that being a farmer I’m used to the mud,” said the show’s Adam Henson as he made his way to a book signing, one of many attractions at the event.

“Countryfile At Christmas aimed to bring the award-winning elements of the popular programme to a live audience in an immersive festive environment,” said a BBC spokesman.

BBC Countryfile Christmas in the Park was a brand new event jam-packed with festive experiences that the whole family could enjoy. Nestled in the park’s magical arboretum, the Countryfile Tented Village provided the perfect winter countryside retreat and played host to a festive feature line up like no other, with the Countryfile presenters as the hosts.

Topics ranged from discussing thought-provoking environmental trends and winter life on the farm, to hearing about the presenter’s New Year’s resolutions and joining in with the “A Question of Christmas” big Christmas Quiz.

It also featured a Christmas kitchen, winter woodland walks, a Christmas shopping village, wine advice and cellar and live “Carol-Oke” singing, all of the team were very happy with the success of it.