New threat to Battersea Park Formula E race with fresh council vote

The Battersea Park Formula E round could yet be torpedoed by a last-minute vote by the local council

New threat to Battersea Park Formula E race with fresh council vote

Last month Wandsworth Council's Community Services Overview and Scrutiny Committee voted in favour of the park hosting London's round of the all-electric championship for the next two years.

Inside the meeting that saved Battersea's FE race

The council's executive then approved this recommendation, pushed through by the committee's Conservative majority, on November 30.

The Labour Party opposition on the committee has since sought a full-council debate and vote on the issue in a bid to have the outcome reconsidered.

This will take place during the December 9 meeting of the council, one day before the break clause in its contract with Formula E expires.

The main argument in favour of the Grade II-listed park being used to host the season-ending double-header, scheduled for July 2-3 in 2016, is a £200,000-per-year financial boost to the council each time the race is held.

With the council facing a substantial budget cut, estimated to be around £30million, cementing the FE deal would allow it to ringfence funding for work on the park.

MITCHELL ADAM: Battersea is a win for all of motorsport

Criticisms of the event highlighted at the previous meeting included claims it was "inappropriate" to use a protected park as a racetrack, with most opponents claiming they supported Formula E as a concept but disagreed with its presence in Battersea.

They also complained about the extent of the disruption the three-week build process caused and the removal of fencing and tyre marks not being completed by the end of November.

Should the council decide to proceed with the event the only obstacle remaining ahead of this season's round would be planning permission, while the next opportunity to invoke a break clause would be after the 2017 race.

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