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Earliest meeting: Wednesday 12th April 1882
Final meeting: Wednesday 12th April 1882
Whilst it is known that racing took place at Chelmsford in Essex in the mid 1700s, the first occasion that races were organised by the Essex Hunt Committee was in 1808 when the Chelmsford racecourse at Galleywood was used as the venue. This arrangement lasted for 4 years before there was a considerable lapse in the Essex Hunts meetings. The Essex Hunt Committee was then reinvigorated to organise further race meetings in 1876 when a new venue at Rundells was chosen on land owned by James Scruby. The meeting on 12th April 1882 was held at Rundells, although there is some thought that it was moved to Harlow Bush just for one year. A racecard of the meeting clearly indicates Rundells was the venue unless, at the last minute, it was transferred. However, there were occasions when the steeplechase part of the meeting was run on a separate course to the point to point races, and this might have been the case in 1882. After ditching Rundells as their chosen venue the committee deemed that a course at High Roothing Bury should be used for the 1898 meeting.

This racecourse is covered in Volume 2 of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons

Mr H Loftus-Arkwright, Sir Henry Selwin-Ibbetson, Mr Robert Lockwood

Principal Races

Essex Hunt Welter Cup, Essex United Hunt Cup, Essex Open Hunters Plate, Essex Farmers Plate

Wednesday 12th April 1882
Essex Red Coat Steeplechase over 3 ½ miles
1. Templar, brown gelding owned by Mr Water
2. Desdichado, brown gelding owned by Sir Henry Selwin-Ibbetson
3. Multim in Parvo, brown gelding owned by Sir Henry Selwin-Ibbetson

The final meeting took place on Wednesday 12th April 1882.
Course today

A nomadic group making use of a number of racecourses.

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 johnwslusar@gmail.com

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 johnwslusar@gmail.com stating your requirements, method of payment (cheque payable to W.Slusar) or Bank transfer, and the address where the book(s) should be sent.
Download an order form
  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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