Mallory Park's future in doubt

Ongoing controversy over noise levels at Mallory Park circuit came to a head yesterday when a meeting between a liaison committee of locals, Borough councillors and circuit managers that was due to go ahead last night was cancelled at short notice. According to Leicester Mercury's This Is Leicestershire website, this was due to there being no new proposals on the table, but a press release from Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council also cited concerns that the meeting, due to be held in a school hall, would be overrun with protestors and disrupted.

We're guessing this'd fail the noise limits
We're guessing this'd fail the noise limits
The meeting was called in an attempt to prevent the disagreement between local residents and the circuit going to the courts. Mallory Park has been reported as saying it would no longer be commercially viable to operate the circuit if the council insists on enforcing strict noise limits and a restriction of 92 operating days set in a 1985 agreement. A reduction for track day operators from 98db to 95db was brought in last August and the council has issued a number of summonses against the circuit for breaching the terms of the 1985 agreement in recent months. Mallory Park is reported as saying it would need to operate for 160 days a year to maintain a viable business.

The council, meanwhile, appears keen to avoid taking legal action but feels the breakdown in relations between locals and circuit managers leaves it no option.

On the face of it many have seen this as a classic case of NIMBYs out to spoil the fun of those enjoying an iconic British motorsport venue but in a press release issued yesterday Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council's Chief Executive Steve Atkinson went to some considerable effort to detail the efforts the council has gone to in attempting to find an amicable solution. And in the This Is Leicestershire story local resident Garry Ball is quoted as saying villagers are divided about whether or not the circuit should be allowed more days or not.

Motocross among the events held at Mallory
Motocross among the events held at Mallory
In the council press release Steve Atkinson addresses a number of what he calls 'misconceptions flying around', including the perception many of the complainants are newcomers to the adjacent village of Kirkby Mallory - a common theme in many noise disputes with circuits. He also points out that the re-establishment of the locals' liaison committee in September 2011 is just one of the initiatives the council has supported in an effort to keep the issue out of the courts. He also affirms that "the council does not intend any of its actions to result in the closure of Mallory Park", insisting that this would be a commercial decision for the circuit operators. He says the council has "no confirmed knowledge" of rumours that, if closed, the site would be sold to housing developers.

Clearly an emotive topic, anyone moved to comment on the issues raised would be well-served by reading the council's detailed appraisal of the situation before doing so.

Nobody from Mallory Park was available for comment.

[Sources:, This Is Leicestershire, The Hinckley Times, and Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council]

P.H. O'meter

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Comments (308) Join the discussion on the forum

  • krisdelta 07 Mar 2013

    Interesting set of pressures here - how would it go down if I moved to Slough and complained about Heathrow? Would anyone consider closing it?

    An interesting piece of speculation around housing developer buying up the land if the circuit closes too.

    I find it facinating that anyone could move close enough to a circuit to be disturbed by the noise, then be affronted because of the noise - bananas.

  • scubadude 07 Mar 2013

    I enjoyed the comment that- "A large number of those village residents who have complained/raised concerns have lived in the village for many years. It is not a case of a small number of 'newbies' making a fuss!"

    Yet they also note that Mallory park has operated for 50yrs... I'd be surprised if many residents have lived there more than 50yrs!

    Its about as sensible as moving to Brighton and complaining about the noise the waves make on the beach. I fully accept if you're not into motorsport the noise would be irritating but then why move within ear-shot of a racing circuit?

    Thats said MPML are daft to keep breaking a previous agreement, whether accidental or delibrate, just feeds the trolls.

  • scarble 07 Mar 2013

    Do they race at night?

  • gofasterrosssco 07 Mar 2013

    scarble said:
    Do they race at night?
    Dunno, but they should!!

  • Pumajay 07 Mar 2013

    It does beg the question of why move there in the first place? It cant all be newcomers to the area i know but for those that are, surely you would do some research into the area your moving to? right?

    would be such a shame to lose this circuit, i was hoping to do a track day there at some point this year.... looks like thats out the window!

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