Monday, April 05, 2010



Lord Derby was a surprise speaker at an extraordinary planning meeting at the offices of Forest Heath District Council in Mildenhall on Thursday evening.
( 25.03.2010) When members voted in favour of deferring a final decision on his controversial Hatchfield Farm development until June.

More than 100 protesters from the Newmarket racing community, including William Haggas and James Fanshawe as well as members of the Save Historic Newmarket Group , made their feelings known by chanting “Down with Derby” and waving placards outside the building prior to the meeting.

Much of the meeting was overshadowed by the earlier than expected release of a favourable report by a government- appointed planning inspector on the soundness of FHDC’s core strategy for housing, which includes Hatchfield Farm. Also, much of the relevant traffic data associated with the application was uncompleted.

Derby was given six minutes to put his case, in which he insisted: “This development would have up to 2,000 houses after 2025, during which (time) there would be no dramatic increases in traffic or people. I would not seek to go ahead with the second phase of 600 houses if the first were found to have an adverse effect on the racing industry. “

He added: “I have no plans to sell the whole site to a commercial developer should it get the go-ahead, and I would retain an active role. My genuine commitment to racing should be taken into account.”

Richard Fletcher, head of planning at Newmarket Town Council, got rapturous applause from the public gallery after his three minutes, during which he said: “If the proposed development gets the go ahead it would be a local disaster and a national humiliation. It would threaten the viability of a quarter of the people who depend on Newmarket for their livelihood and racehorse owners will simply take their horses elsewhere.”

During the general debate, Newmarket-based councillor Warwick Hirst found much to the traffic evidence for the application unsound. He said: “I find it unbelievable that we have an application in which the whole traffic data is based on a survey done on one morning and one evening in March 2007, and we should reject this application.”

Conservative councillor Bill Bishop said: “ If we refuse this application it will go to an appeal. If we defer we have a chance to talk to the people of Newmarket and the full details of the traffic situation will be available.”

After nearly two hours, councillors voted whether to refuse or defer the application. All the conservative councillors bar one voted for deferment until early in June and won the vote 9-5.

Afterwards, Derby said of the deferment: “It’s a sensible outcome and we’ll be back here in June. The big issue was transport and it’s no surprise that councillor’s want time to digest this, as I have seven files on the subject alone.

“I can state again that this development will do no harm to horseracing. Stanley House Stud will remain and I intend to have more mares on the stud and more horses in training.”

Rachel Hood of the Save Historic Newmarket Action Group said: “We expected the council to defer. If they had rejected the application then Lord Derby would have appealed and it would have gone out of our control to a government appointee. The deferment gives councillors an opportunity to reject the project after proper research.”



The fearful pending action of the ‘Bloodhorse Illiterate’ housing and highway development planning parties who now threaten to destroy the areas in and around Equine Newmarket used specifically for the training of bloodhorses.

Facilities that have been cared for and carefully developed and improved over decades, as is the same today. Racehorses cannot be trained in allotments.

These planning parties are totally unaware of just what their pending action if successful will be sacrificing. A sport we have been led to believe by politicians,
(politicians who are also in the main ‘Bloodhorse Illiterate’ as well) is considered to be a Multi Billion Pound British Horseracing Industry, one of the largest industries in this country.

Historical Newmarket the very home and heart of British horseracing. An inheritance passed on from generation to generation by dedicated professional horsemen and horsewomen since the 1700’s moving on from century to century. Today we
owe so much of our success to past highly skilled horsemen. Highly skilled horsemen who have embraced and passed on the true skill and art of handling, nurturing and riding out bloodhorses, against all adversity of which there has been plenty.

These so called developers cannot be allowed to make such a hugely crippling mistake as this. Eg: Similar if Westminster Abbey be ordered by planning councillors in London to be pulled down by developers to make way for 1,600 new houses.

The daily safety needs of a considerable number of horses in training in and around Newmarket depend on crossing roads at both ends of this town. Therefore any and all traffic using these roads in and around Newmarket remain to be a considerable safety hazard to each and ever horse and rider, on each and every day, a dangerous chance to have to face each and every day if employed to ride out within a trainers team. This dangerous reality will become even more dangerous if the population in this area is to be significantly increased.

Who exactly is behind all this development idea, apart from Lord Derby?.
And why are they choosing such a thoroughly unsuitable area to do their building? How can the BHA and the Government go on attempting to open horseracing up to allow all families the chance to have a good day out at the races ... succeed ... if at the same time they are hell bent on destroying all the facilities that the horses need as set out in Newmarket?

On safety ground alone the present plans remain to be unacceptable. These plans if allowed to stand will create the most dangerous environmental hazard area that the world of horseracing has ever seen.

Both the Government Inspectors and the Highway authorities, all are ‘Bloodhorse Illiterate’. Completely oblivious to the dangerous consequences that their actions may have on all the other people to include the horses, who live and work in and around Newmarket. Who will be stuck and left to bare the consequences, very likely to get seriously injured, to loose their lives even, to include the horses. As there have been a considerable number of horse fatalities already to date, there most certainly do not need to be any more.

A dangerous and foolhardy attitude to overlook the needs of the horses and their riders. Same applies to all the other racing areas, Lambourn, Middleham, Malton Marlborough etc etc.

Lord Derby’s Hatchfield site could be helpful to Equine Newmarket if it were to aid Equine Newmarket’s development for the future. To compliment the needs and welfare of all the young ones who have chosen a career in horseracing. First time homes for instance, and the chance to get on the property ladder, all those who already work for trainers in this area, and have nowhere to call their own.

There remain to be major road problems already on the main circumference roads around Newmarket none of which have been sorted at all.




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