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Britain By Car - A Motoring History


Created Date:

22 October 2013

Last Modified:

18 December 2023
Kirkby Mallory

Mallory Park Circuit

One of the UK’s shorter circuits, with races for cars, motorcycles, and rallycross.

Location
Kirkby Mallory, Leicestershire LE9 7QE, about four miles north east of Hinckley.

Date
1956 – 2013.

Shaw’s Corner, Mallory Park, 2010, © Chris Page, via Geograph.
Shaw’s Corner, Mallory Park, 2010, © Chris Page, via Geograph.
Mallory Park circuit map, 2006, © E Gammie, via Geograph.
Mallory Park circuit map, 2006, © E Gammie, via Geograph.
Entrance to the circuit, 2019, © Mat Fascione, via Geograph.
Entrance to the circuit, 2019, © Mat Fascione, via Geograph.
  • Shaw’s Corner, Mallory Park, 2010, © Chris Page, via Geograph.
  • Mallory Park circuit map, 2006, © E Gammie, via Geograph.
  • Entrance to the circuit, 2019, © Mat Fascione, via Geograph.

Commentary
The track at Mallory Park lies within a former estate whose origins reach back to the Norman Conquest.  For more than 700 years, the lands and building therein were occupied by a succession of wealthy and aristocratic families.

The main house on the estate, known as Kirkby Hall, was sold in 1941, and for the remainder of the Second World War was occupied by the Pioneer Corps.  It was demolished in 1952; although workshops, the stable block and coach house still remain today.

After the estate had been sold, plans were laid to organise horse racing on the estate’s former pony trotting track.  These did not come to fruition, and the track was instead leased to the Leicester Query Motorcycle Club.

In 1955, under new ownership, the present tarmac track was created; and the first races, for motorcycles and then cars, took place in May 1956.   Further upgrades took place during the early 1960s, giving rise to both the full circuit, with the Shaw's hairpin/corner, plus the shorter oval circuit.

Amongst the stars who have raced at Mallory are Emerson Fittipaldi, Mike Hailwood, Denny Hulme, Henri Pescarolo, Jochen Rindt, Jody Scheckter, Jackie Stewart, John Surtees, and Jim Clark, who is commemorated at the circuit in a life-size statue.

In recent years, complaints have been made by local residents about noise levels at the track.  In October 2013, following a two-year dispute and a successful prosecution for breaching agreed noise limits, the owners of Mallory Park went into administration.  However, in 2014, the circuit was re-opened under new management but, since then, the focus has largely been on motorcycle racing.

Further details 

  • Motor racing circuits in England: then and now, Peter Swinger, Ian Allan, 2001.
  • Motorsport Explorer, Julian Hunt, Haynes Publishing, 2012.