Castle Combe race track says that it has been delving into the history books and managed to unearth a series of unknown bylaws from the medieval period.
Drafted around 500AD, the laws make clear that local landowners have the right to graze livestock in the field overlooking the ancient village of Castle Combe itself, an area of land which has since been used to create the south-west's 'premier motorsport facility'.
Keen to maintain its prominent position within the local community and only too aware the historical significance of its location, Castle Combe circuit says it has opted to adhere to the newly uncovered bylaw, which means that, from the beginning of the 2018 motorsport season onwards, sheep and cattle will graze the infield of the circuit. It's a move which has already been embraced by the local farming community, many of whom have been desperate to put the space to good use for several years.
'We must admit to being as surprised by the findings as everyone else,' muses Mr T Manager, from Castle Combe circuit. 'The documents themselves were chanced upon by a local researcher going through some obscure archives in the nearby city of Bath, and were only brought to our attention last month. Nevertheless, we feel that as a key part of the local community and economy it's our duty to adhere to them as closely as possible, which is why we'll be permitting livestock to graze from the start of April.'
While doubtless a popular move with the local farming community, Castle Combe's influx of woolly residents will cause a number of issues for those taking to the track itself. The bylaws place a clear limit on the number of animals permitted to graze the infield (50 at most), and also make it clear that both sheep and cows will effectively be free range, able to roam the area at will.