Top judges defer decision on Mildenhall Stadium damages

Still no decision on damages against the home of Mildenhall Fen Tigers ANL-140604-221234009

Still no decision on damages against the home of Mildenhall Fen Tigers ANL-140604-221234009

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Mildenhall Stadium’s future still hangs in the balance as the owners’ nightmare of waiting for judges to decide damages drags on.

Mike Coventry and his family, who own the stadium, had hoped to know last week what damages and costs would be awarded against them but the decision was delayed.

In 2011 the High Court awarded Katherine Lawrence and Raymond Shields, owners of Fenlands bungalow 560m from the stadium in West Row, £20,000 damages and restrictions on stadium activity. The Appeal Court overturned that but in February 2014 the Supreme Court said the High Court was right.

Mike said that last week, the Supreme Court judges had ‘gone away for deliberation’ after discussing whether the Waters family, who owned the stadium until 2006, should be brought back into the case.

Mike added: “At least we can carry on for a bit longer, but you’ve got this hanging over your head. It’s a nightmare.

“What’s so painful is that when my father decided to buy the stadium with his brother, the reason wasn’t to make a million it was to safeguard what they had done and to ensure me and my wife had a future. All that’s been jeopardised by this.

“If we didn’t have this going on we would be doing well.”

He also fears the case will impact other places and not just motorsport venues.

“I’m told a vicar had complaints about the bells, quoting our case,” he said. “Where will you draw the line?”

But the family has been buoyed by the strength of support shown by stadium users and local people.

“People are very upset about it all,” he said. “The support from drivers and spectators has been incredible.”

He said a petition supporting them had 13,500 online signatures and about 8,000 on paper.

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