Bulldozers at Top Gear track spark fear for show’s future after Freddie Flintoff’s horror crash
Diggers have been pictured beginning demolition at Top Gear’s official track, prompting fears among fans about the show’s future.
The track at Dunsfold Park Aerodrome in Surrey is set to be turned into a large housing estate.
Top Gear bosses put filming there on hold after Freddie Flintoff suffered a horror crash in December last year.
The former cricket player, 45, was driving an open-topped three-wheel 130mph Morgan Super 3 car for the show when the vehicle flipped.
Flintoff sustained injuries after the accident and was airlifted to hospital with broken ribs. He has since been recovering, cancelling his work engagements.
A TV insider told The Sun newspaper: “Dunsfold is synonymous with Top Gear, it’s a huge part of the show.
“But allowing the site to be sold off is a damning statement for the series’ future. There’s been mounting pressure for some years for the aerodrome site to be regenerated, but attempts have been resisted.
“But after Freddie’s crash there’s a feeling that perhaps it’s time to put the show to bed and avoid any more potentially devastating crashes. It’s a real blow for fans.”
The pictures show diggers preparing the groundwork at the end of the airfield’s runway ahead of the planned ‘sustainable’ garden village.
The site has been earmarked to turn into a 2,600-home village with school and community facilities since 2005.
The aerodrome was built by the Canadian army in World War Two and was later used by British Aerospace.
It has been the official course for Top Gear since its relaunch in 2002.
The BBC has paused filming on Top Gear as Flintoff recovers from his injuries.
Speaking in March, chief content officer at the BBC Charlotte Moore was asked if the corporation is committed to Top Gear returning.
She said: “My priority at the moment is supporting Freddie through his recovery so I think it would be really inappropriate for us to resume filming now.
“I think when we get to the point where he feels ready... and we’ll get to thinking about getting him back.’
She added: “I think we’ve got to talk about what Freddie wants to do. When someone’s in recovery, I don’t think we would push that ... I think that would be really inappropriate, I wouldn’t be happy.
“I think you’ve got to be really human about this and do the right thing.”