One More Thing
A dog’s life for Taggart
A couple of weeks ago, things were looking rough for Paschal Taggart’s bid to redevelop a new £30 million greyhound racing complex in Wimbledon. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien
A couple of weeks ago, things were looking rough for Paschal Taggart’s bid to redevelop a new £30 million greyhound racing complex in Wimbledon.
But has the crafty old dog got one more trick up his sleeve? It appears so, following the latest interventions, including one by colourful London mayor Boris Johnson.
The existing, rundown track is effectively controlled by, well, you and me. Nama is owed a tidy sum by its owners, FT columnist Luke Johnson’s Galliard Homes.
Galliard borrowed heavily from Irish Nationwide to acquire five tracks, way back when In The Time Of Fingers.
The local council is weighing up two competing proposals to redevelop the site: the favourite, Galliard, for a football stadium and houses, and Taggart for new dog track and associated commercial activities.
The Datalex chairman’s plan, and his We Want Wimbledon (WWW) campaign, looked goosed after Nama recently leased the track for five years to another operator.
Lo and behold, Boris stepped in this month to confirm he favours retaining dog racing at the track, zoned for redevelopment.
This week, the chief executive of the organisation that has signed the five-year lease also chimed in, to praise the WWW campaign and say everybody needs to “work together”. Hint, hint.