The Worcestershire market town of Pershore, on the banks of the River Avon, lies in the Vale of Evesham some 6 miles west of Evesham and the same distance east of Upton-upon-Severn. Records show that the first race meeting took place on the edge of Pershore on Tuesday 26th October 1847, principally involving the Pershore Stakes which was run in 4 heats, as was the norm in those days. The mile and a half race was won by Amazement, owned by Mr Wood, beating Augustus and Monsieur Perrot, and was due to be sold for 100 sovereigns after winning the race. The course was less than a mile from the town centre, surrounded by beautiful Worcestershire countryside. Despite its obvious success, no further flat race meetings were staged in the town, and racing did not return until the very last year of the century. On Thursday 27th April 1899 the inaugural National Hunt meeting was staged on Weir Meadow, close to Defford Road, and it proved to be a good day for Mr Herbert Sidney who won all four steeplechases.
In an area of the country which celebrates its plums with festivals, it seems fitting that the Land O’ Plums Steeplechase became one of its principal races, remaining as the highlight of the racing season until the final meeting took place on Monday 1st May 1939, after which the army took over the course and set up a training camp. Racing did not return after the War, and the land on which the previous, much-celebrated racecourse once stood is now covered by an industrial estate, although Racecourse Road provides a clue to its previous existence.
However, over 70 years after the running of the 1939 Land O’ Plums Chase the race was revived when a number of the towns racing enthusiasts, including local racing Historian Roy Hirons, sought to re-instate the race at Worcester Racecourse. Full results of the first 41 years of the race, together with the most recent renewals, are shown below.

---- ---- ---- ---- ---- ---- ---- ---- ---- 1899
1900 1901 1902 1903 1904 1905 1906 1907 1908 1909
1910 1911 1912 1913 1914 1915 1916 1917 1918 1919
1920 1921 1922 1923 1924 1925 1926 1927 1928 1929
1930 1931 1932 1933 1934 1935 1936 1937 1938 1939
After a 71 year break the much celebrated race was staged again, not at the long-lost Pershore Racecourse, but at nearby Worcester Racecourse
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
No Race No Race 2022 2023            

I am grateful to Roy Hirons for the Land o' Plums trophy shown below

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

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