Who would have thought a race-track could be noisy?

March 6, 2009


Source: Watson & Others v. Croft Promo-Sport Ltd [2009] EWCA CIV 15; see also http://www.thenorthernecho.co.uk/news/4076123.Croft_Circuit_loses_noise_appeal/?action=complain&cid=7472608 ; and ‘Injunction for continuing noise nuisance’ Environmental Law Monthly Env. L.M. (2009) February Pages 1-4

The Claimants (who occupy houses just north of the race circuit) alleged that the defendants use of Croft Motor Circuit, near Darlington gave rise to excessive noise and constituted a nuisance. They sought an injunction to restrain continuation of the nuisance, and compensation for past nuisances. Although the Circuit had received planning permission for motor racing in 1963, this was not obtained without difficulty and various appeals. By 2006, the circuit had upto 147 days (mainly in the summer) in which racing took place. The claimants do not object to the car and bike racing days which amount to 45-50 days each year, but rather to the Vehicle testing and track days (where the noise levels are at their highest, all day long)


In the High Court, Mr Justice Simon decided in favour of the defendants and refused an injunction, but awarded 109,600 compensation in light of the decreased value of their properties and loss of amenity. This argument was rejected by the Court of Appeal, and they later allowed the injunction, restricting the number of days that the circuit could operate.


The Defendants have now been refused leave to appeal to the House of Lords.

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About Kris

Associate Professor in Sports Law, Staffordshire University; British Gymnastics Senior Coach

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