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Earliest meeting: Thursday 9th April 1863
Final meeting: Wednesday 29th April 1885
The tiny Norfolk village of Kirby Bedon lies just 3 miles south east of Norwich and boasts a population of less than 200. Despite its size it hosted a series of steeplechase meetings for over 20 years in conjunction with a number of local regiments.  The first record of a meeting was on Thursday 9th April 1863 when the 5th Lancers helped organise races on the estate of Sir R J H Harvey. The demanding steeplechase course consisted of 22 fences and a gaping brook. On Friday 8th April 1870 an amazing card was staged in which every winner was ridden by Mr Chaston. He won the Welter Hunt Stakes on Mr Dorset’s Marian, the Open Handicap and Light-Weight Hunt Stakes on Mr Betts’ Arlescot, and the Farmers Stakes on Mr R Gittus’ Spectator. The final meeting took place on Wednesday 29th April 1885 when organised by the Fourth Hussars.

This racecourse is covered in Volume 1 of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons Lord Hastings, Sir R J H Harvey, Fourth Hussars, 5th Lancers, Captain Scott, Sir Henry Stracey
Principal Races Kirby Bedon Open Handicap Steeplechase, Welter Hunt Stakes

Friday 8th April 1870
Kirby Bedon Open Handicap Steeplechase over 3 miles
1. Arlescott, brown horse owned by Mr Betts
2. Lolliper, brown horse owned by Mr G Stracey
3. Defence, brown horse owned by Mr Abel

The final recorded meeting took place on Wednesday 29th April 1885.

Course today A course of 22 fences and a gaping brook on Mr R J H Harvey’s estate.
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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