Battersea Park Formula E round survives last-minute council vote

The Battersea Park Formula E round has survived a last-minute veto attempt and will take place next July as planned

Battersea Park Formula E round survives last-minute council vote

A full meeting of Wandsworth Council on Wednesday night opted to uphold the original decision made last month by its Community Services Overview and Scrutiny Committee.

This had been approved by council leader Ravi Govindia at the end of November but was threatened when Labour Party opposition on the committee activated its right for a debate to have the outcome reconsidered.

The vote from the council's 60 members, which took place one day before the break clause in the council's contract with Formula E expires, went in Formula E's favour.

Prior to Wednesday's final vote Cllr Govindia said: "This council is facing unprecedented challenges to its finances.

"The event offers substantial income to both the council and the park.

"It brought positive national and international press coverage of the event and the borough and shows Wandsworth as supporting new technology which, longer-term, will influence the development of road-going electric cars and inner-city air quality.

"For these reasons, I maintain that the break clause should not be exercised for the coming two seasons."

It means the only obstacle remaining ahead of this season's races on July 2-3 is securing the necessary planning permission, which should be a formality given it was approved for the 2015 event.

The next opportunity to invoke a break clause will be after the 2017 race, meaning the event is secured for two years.

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