Back in April 2008 the Croft circuit in North Yorkshire lost its ‘noise’ court case and was smashed in the face with a choking restriction on the number of ‘noisy’ activities it could hold to a minuscule 40 PER YEAR! A family that live close to the circuit turned on the former WW2 aerodrome and brought in a top QC capable getting what they wanted…
The objection used by the QC was not against ‘racing events’ but against “vehicle testing days” and “track days” which has resulted in the enjoyment of their homes being gravely affected by the “loud, intrusive and repetitive noise”. Fancy that – a race track since 1949 having bikes and cars going round it a lot! Outrageous we know. Interestingly, right up until ‘Croft Classic and Historic Motor Sports Ltd’ was set up, to manage Croft, a founder member ‘was’ married to one of the family. Read between the lines what you will?
Croft tried to appeal the restrictions and horrendous compensation and court costs arguing noise and other issues relating to the racetrack had been carefully considered by expert planning inspectors during two public inquiries and a balance struck between the interests of local residents and the public amenity value of the circuit – but they lost. Even the The QC ruling on the case said the court decision would have serious implications for the future use of the racetrack and had left Croft not only exposed to enormous legal costs bills, but also open to other potential claims by an “uncertain number” of other neighbouring landowners. However, the Appeal Court judge said he could find no legal flaw in the QC’s conclusion that the Watsons and Mrs Wilson had suffered an “actionable nuisance”.
An amazing example of how a top legal team can use the ‘word of the law’ to get the outcome they want – even if its a load of crap.
Thankfully the Croft circuit is here and you can still get your kicks riding or driving around Crofts fantastic circuit with Trackdays.co.uk and at the same time get the personal satisfaction of not only supporting Crofts long term survival but also sticking two metaphorical fingers up at those that that tried to close it down!