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Earliest meeting: Monday 31st March 1845
Final meeting: Monday 31st March 1845
The Oxfordshire village of Forest Hill, together with neighbouring Shotover, is located 5 miles east of Oxford. The Forest was famous at the time of William the Conqueror because his half brother Odo held Forest Hill and two nearby Manors. Almost 800 years later the village held its own race meeting over a 3 ½ mile course well known in the area for its heavy nature, strong fences and wide brooks. The steeplechase was restricted to members of Mr Drake’s Hunt, attracting a field of four. The start was in a ploughed field in Holton parish and the race was well contested to half way, with fences cleared in a sportsmanlike manner. However, on reaching the high gate, only Victoriene cleared it, and after jumping the Water Perry Brook went on to secure an easy victory by 50 yards.

This racecourse is covered in Volume 2 of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons Mr Drake, Mr Stallworthy, Mr Bassick
Principal Races Forest Hill 10 Sovereign Sweepstake

Monday 31st March 1845
Forest Hill 10 Sovereign Sweepstake over 3 ½ miles
1. Victoriene, aged mare owned by Mr Bassick
2. Deception, aged horse owned by Mr James
3. Old Dizart, aged horse owned by Mr Stallworthy
4. Irishman, aged horse owned by Mr Sheldon

The only recorded meeting took place on Monday 31st March 1845.

Course today A 3 ½ mile course starting at Holton parish and finishing just after Water Perry Brook.
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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