MSV secures freehold of Donington Hall Estate
Donington Park has been purchased outright by MSV
Jonathan Palmer’s MotorSport Vision concern (MSV) has secured the freehold to the Donington Hall estate. The stately home and accompanying buildings lie adjacent to the Donington Park racing circuit that has been operated by MSV since 2017.
The move will see the 18th century Grade II listed Donington Hall mansion reunited – in spirit, at least – with the circuit, which was originally opened for racing in the grounds of the house back in 1931. MSV is the current leaseholder of the Donington Park circuit, although it’s a long-term arrangement lasting until at least 2059.
As we’ve come to expect from MSV, Palmer has some bold ambitions for his new acquisition. The 61,000 sq ft main hall is set to be sympathetically restored into a 40-room hotel, with what MSV describes as accommodation ranging from ‘spectacular suites to characterful rooms to suit all visitors’.
Meanwhile, Hastings House, the former 45,000 sq ft headquarters of the BMI airline and built in 1990, is to be converted into the Donington Hall Motorhouse, which MSV aims to be ‘the UK’s most prestigious stabling facility for supercars, classic road and racing cars and motorcycles’. Finally, the 18,000 sq ft Lansdowne workshops will be available for letting to high-end engineering businesses that will support the cars kept at the Motorhouse.
Palmer’s idea is to facilitate a readily accessible playground for well-off enthusiasts: “We will be creating an extraordinary and unique facility. Specialist car owners will be able to fly directly into East Midlands airport, view their cars within 10 minutes of landing before settling into, for example, the Rosemeyer Suite at the hotel. Their chosen car will be prepared and warmed up, waiting outside the front of the Hall after breakfast, from where they can drive it up the original carriage drive and directly on to the Donington Park circuit. After a day’s circuit driving, our team will return the car to the workshops for cleaning and a check over before returning it to storage, while our visitors are on their way home.”
MSV expects the Motorhouse to open in the autumn of this year, with the hotel accepting its first guests in 2023.