It seems the hazy recollection of historical events at Musselburgh Racecourse is not confined to one political party (Dave Berry, Courier Comment, March 20).

As the then leader of East Lothian Council, Councillor Berry attended only one meeting of the Musselburgh Joint Racing Committee and declared if he had his way he “would close Musselburgh Racecourse tomorrow”. Thankfully, Councillor Berry’s foresight is now confined to the backbenches at ELC.

He now attempts to rewrite history and laughably takes credit for leading efforts to build the new stables complex.

He fails to mention the whole project was dependent on the Lothians Racing Syndicate securing a £1 million interestfree loan for ELC from the Horseracing Levy Board. He also forgets the old stables, which were owned by LRS and situated on prime building land, were gifted to ELC as part of the deal.

The racecourse already makes substantial payments to the Common Good. It’s called ‘rent’ and the rate is set by independent assessors.

Councillor Berry should also be aware that the racecourse is not-for-profit and that far from being “publically funded buildings” the upkeep, refurbishment and continual investment which maintains the course’s 5 Star VisitScotland status comes solely from racecourse-generated funds.

He speaks of LRS compensation and expenses, which is simply bizarre. I cannot speak for our councillor colleagues who sit on the Musselburgh Joint Racing Committee, but the three LRS members are volunteers and do not and have never received “compensation or expenses”.

Finally, Councillor Berry talks of LRS being “intransigent and secretive” and calls for a “serious investigation”. The LRS would welcome an investigation provided it was independent of ELC and looked in to all aspects of the running of Musselburgh Racecourse. The LRS has nothing to hide and Councillor Berry should refrain from making scurrilous and unfounded comments.

Let’s be thankful Councillor Berry no longer has to concern himself with “weighty matters”. He didn’t fail to keep his eye on the ball, he was watching a different game.

John Prideaux Chairman Lothians Racing Syndicate Limited