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[28 JUL 99] WARWICK RACECOURSE NEWS
New Grandstand For Warwick Racecourse

Warwick is set to compete with the top horse racing venues in the country after construction began on a new 3 million grandstand at the Hampton Street venue.

The course attracts large crowds for Bank Holiday meetings but attendances at regular meetings have long been affected by the lack of facilities in the old grandstand.

It was thought that any redevelopment may prove difficult after the existing stand, which was built in 1809, was the focus of attention from English Heritage who want to protect the 'heritage' of the construction.

However the Warwick-based architects of the new grandstand, Hitchman Stone, have worked closely with English Heritage to ensure that the new structure will have modern facilities but keep its historical feel.

The stand will retain a large percentage of its existing structure and Guy Pearce, contracts manager of Evesham-based Pearce Construction who are carrying out the work believes it will be popular with race-goers.

He said:

"Other towns are famous for their racing but for some reason Warwick is not really like that.

"This will be a landmark for the racecourse and it is very nice for our company to be involved with this kind of thing.

"It has been more difficult than some contracts because of the age of the stand and its historical connections but that had made it more interesting and enjoyable."

The stand will hold 1,500 people and include new state-of-the-art photo finish facilities as well as function rooms and the old Castle Suite.

Warwick racecourse manager Christian Leech said that the work was well and truly underway.

He said:

"Pearce Construction has been involved with other projects involving public facilities and they understand the importance of finishing projects on schedule.

"They are already on site and we are expecting everything to be completed by July next year."

And Leech also stressed that while the work was being carried out racegoers should not be discouraged from attending meetings.

"We have taken several measures to ensure that our racing public is affected as little as possible during the next 12 months," he said.

"One of these measures, the construction of a temporary stand is already being used by racegoers."
    

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CWN / Sport / Horse Racing / Warwick Racecourse / 28 Jul 99

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