Gaming International has issued its first public statement on the fate of Abbey Stadium in months.

The building of a new stadium was necessary for the site owners and Taylor Wimpey to go ahead and build homes there, but Swindon Borough Council is now conducting a formal investigation into potential breaches of this planning requirement

The matter was further exacerbated when a planning application was submitted asking for another condition of the houses being built - ensuring the continuous operation of speedway and greyhound racing - to be removed. 

The owners of the Blunsdon venue have been quiet since April last year, but broke their silence to provide a statement offering 'clarification' during an 'extraordinary meeting' held by St Andrews Parish Council, prompted by the latest planning application. 

The statement, spanning two A4 pages, said: "We wish to be absolutely clear that the request currently under consideration by the council does not seek to remove the planning conditions which mandate the completion of the stadium complex.

"We understand the council's planning portal refers to the 'deletion of speedway and greyhound racing requirements' - however, and importantly, our request seeks to remove the existing covenant that requires 'continuous operation of speedway and greyhound racing throughout the period of the milestones'.

"This request is made because it is no longer relevant given that speedway racing ceased at the site several years ago."

It is reiterated that Gaming International is asking for an updated milestone programme, deletion of the ultimate longstop, deletion of the speedway and greyhound racing covenant, and an updated land ownership position. 

It adds: "The Deed of Variation request ultimately serves to update the current project timeline, update the details of the site owner, and reflect the fact that motorsports racing has now permanently ended at the site.

The statement then says that the borough council granting this changes will allow them to move forward with the next steps of the new stadium build.

"A revised S106 agreement will, in fact, ensure the delivery and implementation of milestones 11 to 15 and secure a pathway to the sustainable regeneration of the site."

This includes finishing the acoustic fencing, demolishing the old site, adding a new car park, landscaping and handing over a new youth training facility. 

"We understand the widespread interest in the future of the site and regret any confusion around the purpose of the Deed of Variation request," it adds. 

The extraordinary meeting concluded with St Andrews Parish Council choosing to oppose the planning application.