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Earliest meeting: 1774
Final meeting: Wednesday 26th September 1894
The first recorded meeting of races organised by the Anson Hunt Committee was in 1774 on a course situated at Lichfield. The course, at that time, was described as 'the new course'. Lichfield races had moved from Fradley Common to Whittington Heath, south west of the city, in 1702 and it was on this course that the history of Anson Hunt races began. The course was a large oval, mainly flat course of 2 miles in circumference, with a separate sprint course for 5 furlong races. Notices advertising the races frequently stated, ‘Fires will be kept in the Stand a week before time, and a cold collation provided on the day’. At the completion of the races cock fighting was staged, as was the tradition in those days.  Racing was popular with nobility, meetings well attended, and events continued until the final meeting on Wednesday 26th September 1894.

This racecourse is covered in Volume 1 of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons Lord Anson, Lord Kennedy, Mr Meynell
Principal Races Bosworth Stakes (2 miles) Trial Stakes (1 mile) Witherley Stakes (2 miles) Atherstone Stakes (2 mile heats)

Wednesday 21st March 1821
Anson Hunt Hunters’ Sweepstakes over 2 miles
1. Viscount, bay gelding owned by Mr Peel 1 1
2. Brutus, bay gelding owned by Mr Peel 2 2
3. Punch, bay gelding owned by Lord Anson 3 3

March 1824

Wednesday 24th March and Thursday 25th March 1824
Bosworth Stakes result (Wednesday)
1. Bog-Trotter owned by Mr E Peel
2. Habberley owned by Mr Mytton
3. Harlequin owned by Lord Kennedy
4. Nell Gwynn owned by Lord Anson

Atherstone Stakes (Thursday)
1. Elbows owned by Mr Yates
2. Truth owned by Mr Applewhaite

The final meeting took place on 26th September 1894
Course today Most of the old Lichfield course is owned by Whittington Golf Club, with the winning post still visible and part of the Grandstand used as a Clubhouse.
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:-

Northern Turf History Volumes 1-4 by J.Fairfax-Blakeborough

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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