Towcester racecourse to close permanently

The owners of Towcester racecourse Fermor Land LLP have announced this afternoon (Tuesday) that the course is to close permanently.

Tuesday, 1st October 2019, 5:46 pm
Library image of Towcester Racecourse

Fermor Land took over management of the racecourse in August 2018 after it went into administration and there have been no horse racing meetings at the track this year.

It was hoped that racing would resume at the track but that will not happen after the announcement today.

Richard Wayman, chief operating officer of the British Horse Racing Association said: “We are saddened to see the closure of Towcester, a beautiful racecourse which will undoubtedly have created fond memories for many racing fans and participants.

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“We had hoped following the course going into administration that the new owners might find a solution which allowed for racing to resume at Towcester, and it is disappointing that has not proved possible.

“The BHA will now work with Arena Racing Company to find the most suitable venues for the ten fixtures involved, which will all remain over jumps.

“From championship racing to grassroots, jump racing remains extremely popular, with a growing base of loyal and knowledgeable supporters.

“The outlook for the sport is a positive one and we will continue to work with parties across the industry to ensure that jump racing in Britain goes from strength to strength in the future.”

Having been informed by Towcester’s owners of their decision to close the course the BHA has assisted in its capacity as the licence issuing authority to ensure the sale of its racecourse fixtures, with the owners deciding to sell these to Arena Racing Company (ARC).

ARC added in a statement: “Arena Racing Company (ARC) can confirm that following the closure of Towcester Racecourse, ARC has purchased the unencumbered freehold of the ten fixtures that remained within the ownership of Fermor Land LLP.

“The transfer of these fixtures from Fermor Land LLP to ARC has been approved by BHA, with two to still be staged in 2019.

“The host venues for the fixtures on Thursday November 28 and Thursday December 19 will be confirmed shortly, with the location of the ten fixtures scheduled in 2020 to also be confirmed in due course.”

Other assets which were sold to Fermor Land LLP and are likely to be affected are machinery, equipment, buildings (stands) and the dog track located at the course. 

Towcester’s greatest horse racing moment came in November 2013 when 20 time champion jump jockey Tony McCoy rode a record 4000th winner - Mountain Tunes - at the track.

McCoy retired from the sport in 2015 having ridden a record 4,358 winners.