DEVELOPERS have insisted they are sticking to planning rules after being spotted doing work at a housing development site next to Swindon’s Abbey Stadium. 

On September 28, it was announced that speedway would not be returning to the Blunsdon site, marking the end of an era.

During the following weekend, a digger was spotted at the site next to the stadium, at land earmarked for houses, which led to speculation about what was going on.

But Taylor Wimpey has said they are preparing the site for construction, something they are allowed to do under planning permission.

A spokesperson for the company said: “As part of the planning consent for our development, we are permitted to carry out a number of activities to prepare the site for the construction of new homes prior to the completion of the stadium.

"This includes erecting fencing, clearing the site, the construction of drainage and utility infrastructure, and setting up a compound.”

Under the terms of the planning permission, work on the stadium must be completed before the homes themselves can be sold, including a new stand and a sound cancelling barrier.

But, that hasn’t stopped fans of Swindon Robins from voicing their dismay over the situation.

Swindon Advertiser: Supporters voiced their concerns back in JuneSupporters voiced their concerns back in June (Image: Newsquest)

Charlie Meredith who runs the Robins updates Twitter account said: “I am beyond gutted and angered that Swindon (speedway) will not be returning to the Abbey stadium.

“However, I am not surprised as I think a lot of people could see this happening a mile away.

"I also feel it’s a bit of a kick in the teeth to call it Robin Gardens, when Swindon has been robbed of a sporting venue.

“Clarke Osbourne, Terry Russell, Justin Tomlinson MP and whoever else should be made to face the fans, to allow us to ask questions and demand answers.”

Chole Hackett added that she was disappointed that Gaming International had not kept its promise to develop the stadium and decided to sell the land to Taylor Wimpey.

Swindon Borough Council says it has not been notified of any activity up at the Abbey Stadium site.

However, the council added that if residents are concerned about potential breaches of planning control then they should report them so they can investigate them.

In a separate matter, Swindon North MP Justin Tomlinson has called on Clarke Osborne to sell the Abbey Stadium.

Speaking to BBC Wiltshire, Mr Tomlinson said: “Swindon Borough Council has rightly said there will be no relaxation of the planning conditions to prevent the final phase of houses progressing until the stadium works are completed.

“Therefore, if Gaming International is struggling to complete the works that seem to be stalled, it should seek to sell the stadium to a to a company that can complete it.

"We are all committed to keeping speedway.”