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Earliest meeting: September 1718
Final meeting: Friday 9th July 1773
The first evidence of racing at the County Durham town of Barnard Castle was in 1718 when a bay horse called Millbank contested the Barnard Castle Plate for £25. However, Baily’s Racing Register first provided detailed results from races held at Barnard Castle in August 1729 on a course situated on Pearson Moor. Racing continued on an annual basis until a 3 day meeting in 1773 when Nutcracker, owned by Mr Fenwick, won the final £50 race. There were attempts to reintroduce racing at Barnard Castle on the Pearson Moor course, firstly in 1840 when two Innkeepers organised meetings which continued for a short time, and secondly in 1925 when less successful.

This racecourse is covered in Volume 1 of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons

Mr Lambton, George Bowes, Henry Vane

Principal Races

Barnard Castle Gold Cup, Barnard Castle 4 Year Old Plate

Monday 8th August 1729

Barnard Castle 4 Year Old Plate
1. Sloven owned by Mr Hutton
2. Miss Hewet owned by Mr Howes
3. Credo owned by Mr Robinson

Tuesday 21st to Friday 24th August 1733

George Bowes Purse run over 2 miles
1. Sprightly owned by Mr Lambton
2. Unnamed mare owned by Mr Croft
3. Brignol owned by Mr Dun
The winner wore White and was ridden by Charles Jackson.

14th & 15th July 1768

Barnard Castle 4 year old Purse run over 2 miles
1. North Briton owned by Mr Coates
2. Tenduc II owned by Mr Coulson
3. Lucetta owned by Mr Hutton

Bardnard Castle 4 mile Weight for Age Handicap
1. Lofty owned by Mr Hutton
2. Hyaena owned by Mr Shafto
3. Nisa owned by Mr Cornforth

The final meeting took place on Friday 9th July 1773
Course today

There were attempts to reintroduce racing to Barnard Castle on the Pearson Moor course. Firstly in 1840 when racing did continue for a short time, and again in 1925 which was less successful.

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.
Download an order form
  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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