Page last updated at 20:40 GMT, Tuesday, 8 September 2009 21:40 UK

Cash bid for horse racing museum

A museum which would celebrate the racing industry in Suffolk could secure an extra £1m in funding, a trust behind the project has revealed.

The county council's cabinet is due to consider a contribution to the Home of Horseracing, which is planned for Newmarket, at its meeting next Tuesday.

The Palace House and Stables have been chosen to house a museum, art gallery and study centre.

The Home of Horseracing Trust said it hoped the council will support it.

It believes the £10.8m centre could attract 44,000 visitors and pump £1.8m in to Suffolk's tourism industry each year.

'Enormous importance'

Forest Heath District Council, which owns the buildings, has already invested £1m and its land assets in the project, the trust added.

Chairman of the trust Peter Jensen said: "We are now well in to the process of raising funds to make this project happen after many years of planning.

"If Suffolk County Council agrees to this funding, this will be of enormous importance to us in moving this project a step forward."

Rosemary Clarke, the county council's portfolio holder for sport, culture, diversity, health and wellbeing, said the project would give Newmarket a "much needed" tourist venue.

"If this (the grant) gets the go ahead, I am confident that will offer a valuable and extremely welcome addition to the community.

"The Home of Horseracing will go a long way towards encouraging those not already enthusiastic about horses or the industry to take an interest in this field and a pride in the town's rich history and heritage."

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