Race fans in battle for Three Sisters

More than a thousand people have signed a petition demanding action over a popular sporting attraction which closed with huge debts.

Thursday, 13th July 2017, 2:48 pm
Updated Tuesday, 18th July 2017, 8:41 am
The sign on the gate when the company went bust

Three Sisters Race Circuit in Ashton, has been temporarily reopened by Motorsport Circuit Management (MCM) following its shock closure in May when the track operator, The Racing School Ltd, announced it had gone into liquidation.

The company, which officially entered into liquidation on May 26, announced it had gone bust three weeks before this, closing the gates on May 2.

With debts including £100,000 owed to Inland Revenue and £20,000 to employees, the company eventually folded with almost £500,000 owed to creditors and more than £1,000,000 of “intercompany” debt.

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The leaseholders, (MCM), have begun taking payment again for events via the Three Sisters official Facebook page.

But campaigners of “Save the Three Sisters Race Circuit” have set up a petition which has already been signed by more than 1,300 people, calling for the leaseholders to step down.

The campaign group do not believe MCM, which is linked to The Racing School Ltd via family members, to be financially “responsible” enough to care for the track.

A spokesperson for the group said: “The page was originally set up as a hub for information on the closure of the racing school and what was happening with the circuit. We set up the petition to allow those who feel that the circuit has been neglected to have their voices heard. The circuit shouldn’t be used to line the pockets of a few.

“It’s a great asset to the north west and we believe it has the potential to be an exceptional venue for many years to come.”

Director of The Racing School Ltd, Josiah James Foulston, resigned as an MCM director in March 2017, just two months before his other company went bust.

Both Wigan Council and Makerfield MP Yvonne Fovargue have now been called upon by the campaign group to help support the investigation into the related companies.

Penny McGinty assistant director of leisure, culture and property services at Wigan Council said: “We are working with all parties to see how we can resolve the situation and find a solution to get the site running to its full capacity again.

“We have a small amount of business rates outstanding from The Racing School. We have received a number of enquiries concerning the business and we are currently considering the issues that have been raised.”

Disgruntled Three Sisters fans are demanding answers from MCM, but to date no one has publicly responded to repeated queries.

Jon Ashley said: “If Three Sisters the ‘venue’ are actively supporting and help promote new entities and people that were involved in the original liquidation then they should state this clearly. It is apparent that many loyal customers and fans want nothing to do with them - no hiding behind the ‘it’s a different company’ - are the people involved in the last closure involved in these new companies? A simple yes or no.”

MCM declined to comment when approached by the Observer.