The Last Race Way


+ nel carrello
122 pp.

Formed over the course of 18 months, The Last Raceway is a body of work that tells the story of Cornwall’s last banger and stock car racing track which lies in the village of St Day. One by one, tracks like this are disappearing throughout the UK as the community succumbs to a slow decline, despite its popularity. For 50 years United Downs raceway has been kept alive through passion and devotion from both locals and visiting competitors, but it now faces its toughest test. The track is under threat of closure, a tourist attraction planned in its place. A once prosperous county which was reliant on industries such as mining, fishing and agriculture, Cornwall is now better known as a holiday destination, with its beautiful beaches and idyllic scenery. The new reliance on tourism means a shift to accommodate visitors over residents. The resulting casualties are often sites of cultural and historical importance which might not fit the tourism industry’s narrative. Favoured attractions and beauty spots are often in stark contrast with nearby areas which suffer from some of the highest levels of poverty in Europe. Highlighting themes of class, rural identity and community, The Last Raceway is a celebration of joy for the sake of joy, of passing on generational knowledge, of culture for the common people, of skill, bravery and excitement, of entertainment, and of showmanship – it is a protest against the pending fate of United Downs Raceway, at the hands of a society that values maximising wealth above all else.