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Earliest Meeting: Friday 10th March 1865
Final Meeting: Friday 10th March 1865
The historic West Berkshire market town of Thatcham is located just 3 miles east of Newbury and 14 miles west of Reading. The town lies close to both the River Kennet and the Kennet and Avon Canal. In the middle of the 19th century it was one of a number of locations in the Newbury area which hosted race meetings. A Grand Steeplechase was staged on Friday 10th March 1865 just over 2 miles from Newbury Town Centre on Mr Greenaway’s farm in Thatcham. The meeting was arranged to celebrate the Wedding Day of the Prince of Wales. Entries were accepted by Mr Brockhurst at the Pelican Hotel in Newbury from where all administration for the race took place. The meeting consisted of 3 races, the main race being won in controversial circumstances by Jenny Jones.

This racecourse is covered not in any of the 4 Volumes of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons Mr Greenaway, Mr Brockhurst, Mr Roberts, Mr Bland, Mr Money
Principal Races Newbury Hunters' 20 Guineas Cup, Speenhamland Pony Race

Newbury Hunters’ 20 Guineas Cup over 2 miles
1. Jenny Jones owned by Mr Roberts and ridden by Ellison
2. Cathartic owned by Mr Bland snr and ridden by Bland jnr
3. Goldseeker owned by Mr Money and ridden by J Money
Betting: 2/1 On Jenny Jones, who won by ½ a length, although an objection was lodged by the second because Ellison was deemed to be a professional jockey. At the Stewards Enquiry at the Pelican Hotel later in the day the Stewards disqualified Jenny Jones, awarding the race to Cathartic.

Tally-Ho Stakes over 1 mile and 12 fences
1. Chicory owned by Mr Cundell
2. Foxbery owned by Mr Marriner
3. Black Bess owned by Mr Handsley

Speenhamland Pony Race Stakes over 1 mile
1. Cigarette owned by Mr Field
2. Polly Perkins owned by Mr Prior

The final meeting took place on Friday 10th March 1865
Course today Land reverted to farmland.
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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