Speaking to Bike Social, Mallory Park’s General Manager John Ward has said that both he and the circuit’s Chairman Peter Chubb are still “working hard” to save the circuit and are pinning their hopes on a further meeting with the local council planned for Wednesday or Thursday next week where they aim for a compromise.
So, is there a lifeline?
On Wednesday 10th July, 250 Mallory Park supporters attended a meeting held by the Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council (HBBC) where a decision was made to reject the new timetable proposed by the circuit’s owners, the BARC, and are now progressing to legal action. The dispute relates to noise levels which are opposed by local residents despite a noise enforcement notice being in place since 1985 dictating the number of events that could be held per year at the circuit.
Mr Ward told us, “We’ve read the noise notice from 1985 and how it’s been operated over the last 28 years has meant that we could have run up to 208 events per year. The concern is about the way it has been interpreted since.”
The British Automobile Racing Club Ltd. (BARC) bought the circuit in 2005 and prior to this the circuit was running around 200 events per year. The last 4-5 years has seen around 145 per year and this year the total is 130 yet HBBC are deciding on reducing this number to 92 – a figure which if upheld would mean the circuit would have to close due to the financial viability.
Following the council meeting earlier this week, Mr Ward told us, “We are very disappointed although it wasn’t such as surprise. We are currently talking with council again following the vote and it was discussed that the door was opened for more discussions. Our Chairman, Peter Chubb, was in touch with council yesterday (Thursday 11th) and it looks like we have a meeting on either Wednesday or Thursday of next week to establish a way forward. We’re working hard and don’t want circuit to close. There has to be a compromise."
Fortunately, this weekend’s VMCC Festival of 1000 Bikes remains unaffected. The event is Mallory Park’s biggest of the year and will feature Wayne Gardner on a Honda RS500 and other famous faces for the motorcycle racing world including Carl Fogarty, Phil Read and John Cooper.