AS Stow lovers put pressure on its new owners to sell so that racing can continue, animal rights campaigners want houses built there instead.

Greyhound Action, a greyhound protection group, wants the three companies who have bought the Chingford Road stadium to put an end to dog racing forever.

The group claims the stadium is responsible for the deaths of over 500 greyhounds every year.

Greyhound Action's UK co-ordinator, Tony Peters, said the group would write to all three companies, urging them to continue with their housebuilding plans so that dog racing can no longer take place at the track.

"They are in a unique position to prevent the slaughter of hundreds of greyhounds every year and we are asking them to recognise this and not to sell or rent the stadium for dog racing.

"According to our research, about 15,000 young greyhounds, bred for the British dog racing industry, are put to death every year, after failing to make the grade as racers.

“Many of these never even make their trials and get killed as young pups, as soon as it becomes obvious that they will be no good for racing.

"Several thousand older dogs also get put down annually, after their racing days come to an end.”

"This means that, as one of Britain's 30 major greyhound stadiums, the existence of a track like Walthamstow is responsible for the slaughter of over 500 greyhounds annually.”

Mr Peters acknowledged that local greyhound rescue groups did “excellent work” in finding new homes for retired dogs but said that racing was dangerous for the animals, who frequently suffered injuries and “suffered considerably in later life.”

Greyhound Action is lobbying the Government to ban greyhound racing altogether, as has already been done in six American states.

BOX See the Greyhound Action website at