SAVE Coventry Speedway and Stox campaign group have said their dream of bringing racing back to the venue was ‘still alive’ after the original decision to refuse development on the site was upheld on appeal.
Plans for 124 homes submitted by Brandon Estates were once again thrown out by the Planning Inspector, saving the speedway from the bulldozers.
Rugby Borough Council had initially rejected the plans, which also included open space, infrastructure, a 3G football pitch, a pavilion and a car park, in November 2022.
The Inspector deemed the need to keep the stadium, and its national importance to speedway and stock car racing outweighed the proposed benefits of the redevelopment scheme.
The appeal was heard by the Planning Inspector at public hearings last autumn, which included evidence from the council, the appellant, and the Save Coventry Speedway group.
Brandon Estates first presented their proposals to build homes on the site of the stadium in 2014, with the speedway closing in 2016.
The Save Coventry Speedway and Stox Campaign Group have been attempting to return the stadium to its former glory ever since.
A spokesperson for the group said: “We are very pleased the Appeal lodged by Brandon Estates over their failure to secure planning permission has been dismissed.
“We are especially grateful to all those who contributed to the GoFundMe last summer, which has proved hugely important and enabled us to participate fully in the Appeal as the Rule 6 party.
“Naturally, there are a great number of matters arising from this decision for us to consider once the relevant paperwork has been reviewed, and we will update everyone further when we can.
“Our dream has always been to get speedway and stock car racing back to their rightful place at Brandon, and following this decision that dream is still very much alive.”
Rugby Borough Council’s growth and investment spokesman Coun Ian Picker said: “I am very pleased that the Inspector agreed with members of the Planning Committee that the benefit of the proposed housing scheme did not outweigh the loss of a historic venue for speedway and stock car racing.
“The Save Coventry Speedway and Stox campaign group deserve enormous credit for the work they put into providing evidence around the viability of the sport and its potential should the stadium site become available again.”
Visit www.rugby.gov.uk/coventrystadium to read the Inspector’s full decision.