Avon Valley Speedway blames Shire of Northam for restricting events

Avon Valley Speedway will restrict events next season, citing Shire of Northam's "strict regulations" and a lack of support as a reason for the change.

The local speedway reopened in 2016, boasting 10 race events for the season from September to July.

But, next season will feature only "two or three" events.

Avon Valley Speedway manager Rod Howe said vandals caused $20,000 damage to the facility after he was forced to let caretakers go, as part of a new Shire of Northam lease agreement.

Nothing can survive a bureaucracy in full flight.

Avon Valley Speedway manager Rod Howe

Mr Howe said a caravan where the caretakers slept was not allowed at the site and he would have to build a proper house, but he could not afford it.

Following the caretakers' departure, Mr Howe said the facility was ransacked by vandals who stole vehicles, cut cables and electrical wires.

"We put new locks on but they just smashed them off," he said.

As a result, Mr Howe said equipment would have to be brought in and taken away after an event, including generators and lighting towers.

The Shire of Northam have attempted to work with the leaseholder to bring the standard of the venue and the events being run up to an acceptable level from both a public health and safety perspective.

Shire of Northam Chief Executive Officer Jason Whiteaker

"It makes it very expensive to do," he said.

"So Northam will be restricted to two or three race meetings a year."

Mr Howe said the Shire of Northam also would not allow burnout competitions, which are "one of the most successful things for speedway".

"They've really hamstrung the place under their strict rules and regulations," he said.

"The Shire has never put one cent into the Speedway, and has made hundreds and thousands of dollars out of rent.

"Nothing can survive a bureaucracy in full flight."

Shire of Northam chief executive Jason Whiteaker said the Shire was focused on ensuring the facility is safe for spectators, competitors and neighbouring landowners.

"The Shire of Northam have attempted to work with the leaseholder to bring the standard of the venue and the events being run up to an acceptable level from both a public health and safety perspective," he said.

"This has been an ongoing source of frustration for the Shire of Northam and has resulted in significant time and effort going in to assisting Mr Howe.

"A number of the issues that Mr Howe mentioned have been longstanding issues that we were working with him to resolve."

Mr Whiteaker said the lease agreement "clearly articulates" the requirements being placed on the site.