The home of British motorsport Silverstone has received a major boost in its long term security following both Aylesbury Vale District Council and South Northamptonshire Council giving the circuit planning permission to carry out its '20 year Masterplan'.

The Silverstone Development brief, put forward in February 2009 which has now been given the green light proposes a major revamp of the site which will consist of three hotels, a business park, technology centre, education campus, exhibition centre and improved spectator and leisure facilities including a karting track.

Existing elements of the circuit will also go under some refurbishment.

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The development should please Bernie Ecclestone as the F1 supremo has made no bones in pointing out circuits like Silverstone need to invest in modern facilities like those of Abu Dhabi's Yas Marina Circuit, or face the axe from the F1 calendar.

The new revamp economically has substance as the project promises to inject around 8,400 permanent jobs while also offering around 550 construction job per annum.

Although the circuit is owned by the BRDC (British Racing Drivers Club) funding for the project is yet to be finalized but Silverstone Holdings Ltd are understood to be in advanced negotiations with a third party, vital for the projects existence.

Silverstone Holdings Ltd managing director Richard Phillips, naturally is elated with the decision while eyeing the circuit to continue its central role globally not only as a sporting event, but also to emerge as a leader in business, leisure and technology.

"We are delighted with the outcome and approval of this planning application,'' he said. "This is the most important initiative Silverstone has taken in its 60-year history as the home of British motor racing.

"This planning will help maintain Silverstone's position as a leading global centre for sport, leisure, education and technology and retain its position as a world-leading motor sport destination."
by Simon Evans