Over 100 riders show support for under threat Derbyshire bike track at Christmas event
A family-run Derbyshire bike track facing a judicial review to decide its future received a huge show of support over the festive period, with over 100 riders turning up for an event.
More than 100 bikers came to Butts Quarry, Ashover, to take part in the ‘Christmas Pud Enduro’ event.
This comes after a difficult 12 months for the owners, Barry and Jenny Dring, who were served with an abatement notice by North East Derbyshire District Council in December 2020.
Jenny Dring said: “Every time we open the track, all the riders are asking us how it's going, telling us we can't lose Butts Quarry. This event shows how valued and loved our bike track is, even on a foggy, wet and extremely muddy day- lots of fun was had by all without any injuries, just lots of happy riders glad to get out on their bikes.
“It beggars belief what is happening - look at the amount of businesses that haven’t survived the pandemic, and we’re just going to work to pay our solicitors costs. It’s soaked every single penny up that we have earned out of that track.
“How can the council warrant spending all this public money on trying to close down a perfectly good track?”
Currently, the track opens every two weeks for an event, but the NEDDC’s abatement notice would only permit Butts Quarry to open once a month.
This would leave the track struggling to survive - and it is not just riders who are hoping the Drings will win their review. Almost 13,000 people have signed an online petition calling on the council to allow motorsports to continue fortnightly at the track.
Jenny said: “My husband put a post in the Ashover Village Facebook group to say what was happening to us, and we were astonished by the amount of support we got from local people. That gave us a lift, as well as the thousands who have signed the online petition.
“We’re one of the oldest tracks in the UK, and a lot of local people are saying this is part of our heritage, part of Ashover.
“The council don’t know what we have here. We have world champion bikers coming down to the track - if there was a world champion footballer that liked to use a particular pitch, this wouldn’t happen.”
Derbyshire Times readers have also expressed concerns.
Teri Vincent was worried about the impact the loss of the track might have, and said such venues have a positive impact in terms of mental health.
Kev Jones added: “Whoever complained must have moved there after the track was first there. Why not just leave them be and support a local business and part of the village’s history?”