Racecourse owners believe they will secure fixtures next year after racing bosses gave them the go-ahead to bid for events.

An application from Great Leighs to bid for fixtures was approved by the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) on Monday.

The authority has warned the course is not guaranteed fixtures, but delighted course officials have welcomed the likely return of racing.

Great Leighs, which has not hosted racing since 2009, was taken over by a new company led by Betfred owner Fred Done in December.

The new company, Great Leighs Estates Limited, announced its intention to rename the venue Chelmsford City Racecourse.

Mr Done said: "I am delighted that we will race in 2015 and I look forward to seeing Chelmsford City Racecourse welcoming the racing public, at what will surely be the best all weather racing venue in the UK."

This year, 296 fixtures were allocated to the four existing all-weather surfaces in the UK.

A bid from another new all-weather track, in Newcastle, was also accepted by the BHA this week.