ACU license holders and motorcycle race fans are being urged to sign a petition to allow roads to be closed for sporting events without needing an Act of Parliament – a requirement that is holding back motorsport in England, Wales and Scotland.
The UK is losing out both in sporting and economic terms as a direct result of the law that requires an Act of Parliament to suspend the Road Traffic Act on a stretch of the public highway. Throughout Europe (and also in Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man), ‘closed road’ events such as the Isle of Man TT, the North West 200 and the Ulster Grand Prix bring great benefit to the local communities in terms of tourism, economic prosperity and sporting kudos.
The UK government should provide a mechanism to deliver a Temporary Suspension Order (in association with local authorities) that would enable a limited annual number of ‘closed road’ events to take place in England, Wales and Scotland, with the associated benefits for the regions selected.
The Motor Sports Association is currently undertaking an economic impact assessment to support this proposal. Previous studies undertaken on behalf of the Jim Clark Rally, put the figure for that one event in excess of £3m – this leads the MSA to estimate that closed road rallying for a limited number of approximately 20 events a year, could deliver substantial benefit to local areas, particularly in the low season, of between £20m and £60m a year.
ACU Business Development Manager Dave Luscombe said: “The fact that you need an Act of Parliament to close roads in England, Wales and Scotland is certainly restrictive to event organisers and holding back our sport. Some of the best motorcycle racing in the world takes place on closed roads at the Isle of Man TT and we think by offering a Temporary Suspension Order there may be even more high quality events for motorsport fans to participate in and visit – all with lots of benefit to the local area and economy. If you support motorsport then please sign the petition.”
To sign this petition and support motorsport in the UK, simply go to http://www.petition.co.uk/msa and follow the brief instructions, it will take less than a minute to complete and verify your signature.