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Earliest meeting: Wednesday 6th April 1842
Final meeting: Wednesday 6th April 1842
The Kent village of Chalk, now a suburb of Gravesend, held its own races in the mid 1800s, although the only recorded meeting took place on Wednesday 6th April 1842. The village dates back to Saxon days, and was mentioned in the Domesday Book, although there is some evidence of a Roman Villa on the outskirts of the village. The village also has close associations with the author Charles Dickens who was married to Catherine Hogarth and spent his honeymoon in the village. Indeed, Pickwick Papers was written during a stay in Chalk, and part of the village was used as a setting for Great Expectations. The course for the 1842 meeting started 2 miles north of the village, across the glebe and on to a field called the Seven Sisters. It then turned left to the old farm house and returned to its starting place. The main race, a 10 Sovereign Sweepstake Plate, attracted a field of 9 and was won by Mr Norton’s Pauline.

This racecourse is covered in Volume 2 of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons Mr Norton, Mr Thomas, Mr Brooks
Principal Races Chalk Steeplechase Plate

Wednesday 6th April 1842
Chalk Steeplechase Plate
1. Pauline, aged mare owned by Mr Norton
2. Lady Louisa, aged mare owned by Mr Thomas
3. Vixen, aged mare owned by Mr Brooks
4. Tally-Ho, aged horse owned by Mr Weeks
5. Jack The Lad, aged horse owned by Mr Evans
6. Lady Susan, aged mare owned by Mr Davis

The final meeting took place on Wednesday 6th April 1842.

Course today Starting two miles north of the village and progessing to the Seven Sisters, and the old farm house before returning to the start.
If you have photos, postcards, racecards. badges, newspaper cuttings or book references about the old course, or can provide a photo of how the ground on which the old racecourse stood looks today, then email

Much of the information about this course has been found using internet research and is in the public domain. However, useful research sources have been:-

London Illustrated News

Racing Illustrated 1895-1899

The Sporting & Dramatic Illustrated

Northern Turf History Volumes 1-4 by J.Fairfax-Blakeborough

The Sporting Magazine

A Long Time Gone by Chris Pitt first published in 1996 ISBN 0 900599 89 8

Racing Calendars which were first published in 1727

ISBN 978-0-9957632-0-3

652 pages

774 former courses

ISBN 978-0-9957632-1-0

352 pages

400 former courses

ISBN 978-0-9957632-2-7

180 pages

140 former courses

ISBN 978-0-9957632-3-4

264 pages

235 former courses

Copies of the above books are only available by emailing stating your requirements, method of payment (cheque payable to W.Slusar) or Bank transfer, and the address where the book(s) should be sent.
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  Quantity Cost
Volume 1 North of Hatfield £19.99 + £4 postage    
Volume 2 South of Hatfield £14.99 + £3 postage    
Volume 3 Wales & Scotland £9.99 + £3 postage    
Volume 4 Ireland £9.99 + £3 postage    
Volumes 1 - 4 £54.96 + £5 postage    
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