One of Ireland’s oldest greyhound racing tracks has been closed due to a lack of support from the Irish Greyhound Board (IGB).
Lifford Greyhound Stadium was built back in 1959 and has been hosting greyhound racing since the early ’60s.
SEE ALSO: IRISH GREYHOUND RACING GUIDE
The decision to close the stadium was made by the owners and proprietors after an ongoing lack of support from the IGB, who have since released a statement of remorse for all the workers that will be out of a job.
After a multimillion-euro upgrade in the early 2000s, the stadium has lost value and will be sold for less than €2 million.
Pundits and trainers alike are shocked by the decision and will need to find another stadium in order to keep their businesses thriving.
The IGB will undergo a comprehensive strategic review later this year in October, looking at the future of greyhound racing.
The review will address further changes to stadium infrastructure and financial stability, as well as overviewing all licensing of stadia.
“The IGB is very aware of the excellent work done by all those at the track as part of the greyhound fraternity. The Duffy family, owners of the track, have a long association and strong commitment to greyhound racing,” the IGB statement said.
“While Lifford is a private track and not in the ownership of the Irish Greyhound Board, the IGB has provided wide-ranging support to Lifford for a long period of time. This included a significant capital financial investment in providing the current facilities at the stadium. The IGB has engaged with Lifford in recent times regarding financial difficulties at the track, which included a meeting between the Board and Lifford’s owners in May 2019.
“However, the arrangement of the type sought by the stadium representatives at that time is not within the mandate of the Board as a semi-state company and does not meet the corporate governance requirements applying to the IGB.
“Indecon Economic Consultants is currently conducting a comprehensive, strategic review into the future needs of the Irish greyhound industry, with a full report expected by October 2019. The review will provide an assessment of stadium infrastructure and financial sustainability, along with detailed recommendations regarding all licensed stadia.”