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Valleys' £280m racetrack decision put on-hold

Blaenau Gwent Council was today asked not to give planning consent to the racetrack.

Planning approval for the 'Circuit of Wales' racetrack north of Ebbw Vale was stopped in its tracks today.

The Welsh Government stepped in to ask Blaenau Gwent Council not to give the plans the green light as ministers want to look at the plans in more detail.

"The holding direction provides the Welsh Ministers with more time within which to consider whether or not the application should be called in for their own determination," said a government spokesman.

"The Welsh Ministers have been asked to call-in the application and those requests are still under consideration. The holding direction provides the Welsh Ministers with more time within which to consider whether or not the application should be called in for their own determination."

The holding direction prevents the council from granting planning permission but doesn't stop the council from continuing to process the application.

Debating the proposed £280m Circuit of Wales motorsport track

On Wednesday's ITV News, Ed Foster from Motor Sport Magazine discusses the proposed Circuit of Wales motorsports track with presenter Jonathan Hill.

He says there are still "plenty of hurdles to come", citing the need for finance.

Michael Carrick, Chief Executive of the Heads of the Valleys Development Company, the firm behind the project, says "genuine concerns" about the environmental impact of the scheme have been taken seriously.

He insisted the project remains viable, saying the site's transport links would benefit it.

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Council unanimously backs Ebbw Vale track

The Circuit of Wales claim developers will be a venue for MotoGP, World Superbikes and Touring Cars. Credit: PA

Blaenau gwent Council has unanimously voted yes to approve outline planning permission for a racetrack north of Ebbw Vale.

Developers say it will transform the local economy promising jobs and investment as well as thousands of visitors a year.

Racetrack provokes 'Nature vs Jobs' argument

The Circuit of Wales, claim developers, will create up to 6,000 jobs if it is built north of Ebbw Vale. Blaenau Gwent Council will vote on whether to approve the plans this afternoon. But nature groups are opposed to the plans claiming it will damage the environment.

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Welsh Government should decide racetrack plans

The Brecon Beacons National Park Authority says the Circuit of Wales development should be decided by the Welsh Government and not left to the councillors of Blaenau Gwent.

The BBNPA has written to the Welsh Government to formally request that the application is called in for their determination on the basis that the planning proposals raise planning issues of more than local importance, conflict with national and local policies... are controversial... and will irreparably affect sites of scientific, nature conservation.

– Brecon Beacons National Park Authority

Open Spaces Society: 'Reject damaging' racetrack

The Open Spaces Society says the Circuit of Wales racetrack would be a "gross intrusion" and extremely noisy if it were given the go-ahead by Blaenau Gwent Council.

The proposal is on registered common land where the public has the right to walk and ride. The development cannot proceed unless the land is deregistered and suitable, comparable land is offered in exchange and the transaction permitted by the relevant Minister. We believe such land is not available. Claims on the applicant’s website that planning is the final hurdle are not true and they should be advised of the common land issues.

– Open Spaces Society
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