Donington parp: Kevin Wheatcroft of Wheatcroft and Sons Ltd, the owners of Donington Park circuit got back on Thursday night and discovered his lovely home had been completely ruined by squatters, writes our circuit dirty protest expert, Tony Hodgkins-Disease.
Following a 12 month holiday on the Spanish island of Minorca, Mr Wheatcroft returned to his cherished East Midlands circuit – which hosted the European Grand Prix in 1993 and blah-blah Senna blah-blah wet weather blah Craner Curves – only to discover the previous leaseholder had systematically shat all over it – with a digger.
“I am absolutely appalled”, Wheatcroft told reporters. “We’ve only been away for a few months and we come back and look what’s happened,” he gesticulated at a river of mud and abandoned JCB’s.
Disgraceful scenes greeted the Wheatcrofts upon their return from holiday
“I thought in Britain, every Englishman’s home is his castle. Well, in my family’s case it’s a racetrack but if the by now strangled metaphor still holds, now my castle has turned into – at best – a crumbling fort. With a moat made of mud. And a blocked toilet”, he added, sadly.
The East Midlands track, famously hosting the 1993 European…etc. – Senna? Got it? Right. – was apparently leased to a separate entity earlier in 2008 on a promise – or possibly even, deal – that the circuit would host future Grand Prix, enabling it to finally update its stock film footage: of a Mclaren driving through some puddles, grainy black-and-white Auto Unions sporting Swastikas and Anvil playing the Monsters of Rock festival in 1981.
It is alleged that with the deal signed and guarantees made the Wheatcrofts finally felt able to leave their beloved ribbon of tarmac and took a well deserved break at their Balearic timeshare apartment.
“We thought that we could leave our homestead in good hands”, Wheatcroft said, “but we were wrong” he added, weeping bitter tears of burglary and betrayal onto the mud spattered tarmac.
Forever sullied: Battle of Britain monument now with the sad refrain, “Kev’s mum likes anal”, written in permanent marker on the fuselage
It would appear that the circuit, far from being safe upon signing of the lease, was left crucially unattended for about 6 months during which a group of chancers noticed the empty status, save for some Motorhead fliers and a collection of heavy duty earth moving equipment and promptly moved in uninvited. Once there – according to Wheatcroft – they systematically trashed it by:
- digging up the track
- defacing the Spitfire at the Old Hairpin
- spoiling the carpet in the museum
- fiddling the gas meter
- defecating in the flowerbeds
Sadly, Wheatcroft continued, the degradation looks ultimately as though it will go unpunished as the squatters have long since fled the scene and the family now face an uphill struggle gaining recompense for the BMX track their once precious circuit has become.
“We are just going to have to get on with it,” Wheatcroft sighed. “But if anybody sees Simon Gillett tell him he’s got a 10 minute head start before I come after him with 50 of my staff armed with pitchforks in massive landrovers and this fucking big gun”, he added.