Greyhound racing in London faces extinction, following the decision by London Mayor Sadiq Khan to allow the Wimbledon Greyhound Stadium to be the site for AFC Wimbledon’s new stadium.
The London Mayor has granted Merton Council the right to hold the final decision regarding the tracks future, offering no hope for greyhound racing survival in London.
Merton Council officials have previously stated that they want League 1 football club AFC Wimbledon to return to Plough Lane having outlined plans for a 20,000 seat stadium, 600 homes and a leisure centre.
AFC Wimbledon governance has been seeking a new stadium away from its current home ground Kingsmeadow (capacity – 5000) as the club has climbed the ranks of English football being promoted 6 times in 13 seasons.
Despite protests from greyhound racing campaigners, Khan is reported to want to move quickly on the Plough Lane redevelopment project, rejecting calls for a public inquiry regarding the site.
Khan’s decision effectively terminates greyhound racing in London, as the sport has witnessed the closure of tracks in Wembley, West Ham, Clapton and Hackney. Following the closure of the Walthamstow track in 2008, Wimbledon was the only place left for race-goers.
Backed by Merton Council, the London Mayor stated that having reviewed his options “the stadium and the leisure facility proposed alongside it will be of great benefit to Londoners and the wider community for generations to come”