Save Brighton Speed Trials campaign launched

By Andy Downes -

General news

 02 January 2014 11:08

A campaign has been launched to save Brighton’s historic seafront Speed Trials following the decision of the city council to axe the event after 108 years.

Brighton and Hove City Council is planning to block permission to grant a licence for the event; a decision the council says follows a fatal accident in 2012 when a sidecar passenger was killed but which critics claim is just part of an on-going anti-vehicle campaign being waged by the Green Party which runs Brighton and Hove City Council.

Brighton is part of the constituency of Britain’s lone Green Party MP, Caroline Lucas.
The campaign to save the event has already gathered thousands of signatures and motorsport fans are being urged to lend their weight to the fight by signing up too.

A statement from Brighton and Hove Motor Club says: “The Speed Trials has been running in Brighton since 1905 and is one of the highlights of the seafront entertainment calendar. Thousands of people come down for an entertaining fun-packed day out for the whole family to watch some of the UK’s best race cars and motor bikes compete along Madeira Drive. Over two hundred cars and motor bikes line up to take a timed run including road cars, race cars and drag bikes who compete to win the fastest in their class. A top six run-off to find the fastest car and bike brings the day to a dramatic close.

“Brighton and Hove Council is planning to block permission for this annual event so we need your help. As well as signing our petition you can support the campaign by circulating the link to the petition to friends and family, FaceBook contacts and Twitter followers.

“The Brighton Speed Trials is organised by Brighton and Hove Motor Club; the club’s Tony Watts said: “We are appealing to motorsport fans, local residents and everyone who enjoys a family day out at the seaside to help us save this historic event. The loss of the Brighton Speed Trials will be the end of an era for Brighton with over 100 years of history and entertainment in the area gone.”

The 2013 Brighton Speed Trial was cancelled because the club running the event was still waiting for an inquest and report into the death of Charlotte Tagg who was killed in 2012 when the sidecar she was passenger in crashed into a barrier. In the end no blame or fault was laid at the Brighton and Hove Motor Club.

The next stage in the decision over the future of the Speed Trial will be discussed by the city council environment committee on January 23 with that committee’s recommendation going back to the full council.

Vice chairman of the club Len Woolley told MCN: “We really need people to show their support for the event as we hope by us explaining the advantages of running the speed trials and people showing to the council how much they love the event, we can change some minds.”

You can sign the petition by either visiting www.savebrightonspeedtrials.com or go directly to the petition which is on the Brighton and Hove Council web site and sign it now: http://tinyurl.com/qjtbmub