The United Kingdom’s Secretary of State has decided that DaimlerChrysler UK’s plan for a heritage and technology centre on the site of the historic former motor racing circuit at Brooklands in Surrey will not be ‘called in’ for a public inquiry, effectively giving the green light to the project.

The local council submitted DCUK’s property development planning application to the Government Office of the South East (GOSE), for the Secretary of State to consider, after resolving to grant the scheme outline planning permission.

In a statement, DCUK said the Secretary of State decided that the benefits which the development would bring, particularly in terms of the restoration and long-term preservation of the historic site, meant the application should be decided at local council level.

DaimlerChrysler UK retail managing director Geoff Brady said: “We are delighted that the project has been given the green light. We will now be working with Elmbridge Borough Council to finalise our plans to save the Brooklands site, and create a unique experience for Mercedes-Benz and motor enthusiasts.”

The centre, on a 150 acre site at Weybridge in Surrey, will be a technological showcase for Mercedes-Benz passenger cars and will commemorate the history of the marque and its association with the famous Brooklands circuit.

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The purchase of the central area of the Brooklands site from the Universities’ Superanuation Scheme is subject to DaimlerChrysler obtaining planning consent.
Plans for the site include flood control works, a 60 acre country park with riverside walks and associated new roads and bus transport.

The heritage and technology centre will be housed in a purpose-designed single building with display galleries. Theatre, visitor, education and hospitality facilities will also be available for local businesses and schools to use.

The new building will be next to the Brooklands Museum and circuit. The centre will also serve as a vehicle product information and delivery centre where owners can drive their cars on a specially designed circuit.

A business park and four star hotel are also proposed for the site.