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Earliest meeting: April 1864
Final meeting: Monday 25th April 1904
The earliest race meeting in the Worcestershire market town of Tenbury Wells was on Tuesday 12th June 1792 on a course at the Old Wood Common a mile south of the town centre. The races between this early date and the last flat race meeting in 1863 are covered elsewhere in this edition. Within a year Tenbury Hunt were staging steeplechase meetings in the town, but they were never of great quality, and even lacked quantity on most occasions. Despite this, by 1889 the town was holding two meetings yearly, the first in May and the later one in July. The next year, on Thursday 8th May 1890 the newspapers slated the meeting, writing that the attendance was fair given the meagre card on offer, and who could blame them? The Farmers’ Plate typified the meeting when three runners faced the judge, with Onyx going off the 2/1 on favourite over Kit at 3/1 and True Blue at 5/1. Every horse in the race fell at least once, yet all persevered to complete the course in a dreary affair.  Those prepared to lay the odds out on Onyx were rewarded, but experienced an uncomfortable ten minutes before collecting. Racing continued to be well supported for the next 15 years, even though cards had few runners. The 1900 meeting had just 11 horses for the five races, offering very little sport. The final National Hunt meeting was held on Monday 25th April 1904.

This racecourse is covered in Volume 1 of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons Captain Adams, Mr Athony Benn (Stewards), Hon. Aubrey Hastings
Principal Races

Burford Steeplechase, Tenbury Hunt Farmers’ Race, Scurry Stakes, Teme Side Chase

Thursday 8th May 1890
Burford Steeplechase over 3 miles
1. Elmore End, 11st 7lb ridden by Mr Villar
2. Pink Thorn, 11st 7lb ridden by Mr A Brocklehurst
3. Chancellor, 12st ridden by Mr O T Mence

Flat racing continued to be popular in the town, although they were unique in that a full day meeting offered races in the morning and in the evening. Despite this the crowds rolled in and stayed all day. It was in 1863 that the first National Hunt races were introduced to Tenbury. By 1889 the town was holding two meetings yearly, the first in May and the later one in July. Racing continued to be well supported for the next 15 years until a final National Hunt meeting in 1904.

The map below indicates an outline of the former racecourse and is shown courtesy of Google.

The final meeting took place on Monday 25th April 1904.

Course today On Oldwood Common.
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

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