No justice is currently being offered to motorsport fans, motorsport circuits and the motorsport industry in terms of excessively prohibitive sound and event restrictions.
Why should a circuit , club, company or event suffer as a result of the failings of house puchasers in their local research ahead of purchasing their property?
The majority of motorsport circuits and venues in the UK have been in existence for a very long time, so several generations of neighbours have peacefully co-existed with the motorsport taking place, so why should newcomers be able to throw a tantrum and force prohibitve restrictions to be imposed on that motorsport.
A case in point is Castle Combe Circuit near Chippenham in Wiltshire. The circuit takes its responsibilities to its neighbours very seriously. Even though it has hosted motorsport for 60 years, it pro-actively works to keep noise to a minimum, building banking, sound barriers and planting rows of trees to reduce noise eminating from the circuit. Noise levels from vehicles are rigorously checked by scrutineers throughout the events to ensure that they comply with MotorSport Association regulations which are already stringent. When a new housing development was built adjacent to the circuit, the circuit owner made sure that the circuit's presence was well advertised to buyers and as a measure of good will, he offers them free season tickets every year. Still, new residents in local villages raised complaints with the local council and Environmental Health about noise levels, resulting in prohibitive restrictions being put in place which have prevented the circuit from being able to host the top national and international motorsport series (notably British F3/GT which had been a regular fixture for many years). This happened despite sound meters taking measurements that showed the lawnmowers being used in these villages were louder than the ambient noise heard from the circuit. This has deprived motorsport fans in the South West of a great deal of enjoyment, has severely reduced the ability of the circuit to generate revenue, will have reduced the employment opportunities they can offer, has affected local businesses such as accomodation providers who would have hosted competitors and fans alike, and has removed revenue opportunities for the motorsport industry as a whole. The circuit was keen to point out to the complainants at the time, that to try and replace this lost revenue so the circuit could remain a viable business, they would have to host several events such as car boot sales, meaning more weekends with large volumes of traffic travelling to the circuit. The circuit would prefer to minimise this type of event because of the disruption it can cause.
Another case affected Rockingham Motor Speedway near Corby. They built their oval circuit on an abandoned, out-of-town brownfield site with contaminants that meant it was usable for little else. Just a few years after establishing itself, a developer put in an application to build a new housing development nearby, but felt that the circuit would mean people wouldn't want to buy the houses, so lodged proceedings to have the circuit restricted on how often it could run events. This is nonsensical that somebody can come along and place restrictions on a pre-existing enterprise just because it doesn't suit their own interests. Rockingham is struggling to survive under the restrictions placed upon it, threatening jobs at the circuit and associated industries and employers.
The ability of new residents to force restrictions upon pre-existing and often long established enterprises and activities seems to be a complete injustice, restricting tens of thousands of people from engaging in their chosen pastime and preventing businesses from operating in a viable and profitable manner.
I am writing this without any financial interest in the matter. I am just a motorsport fan with a passion for the sport.