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Earliest meeting: Monday 6th April 1840
Final meeting: Monday 5th April 1841
Buckenham is a tiny Norfolk village made more famous by its close association with the RSPB Buckenham Nature Reserve. It can boast its own railway line from Norwich, merely for the use of the twitchers, but in 1840 racing enthusiasts flocked to the village for the inaugural race meeting on Monday 6th April 1840. The course was spread over 5 meadows to form a circuit which enabled spectators to view the entire race. Each circuit consisted of 6 leaps, meaning a 2 mile race had 12 fences. The opening chase was won by Mr Brett’s mare, but only after Mr Rush’s horse fell at the last while leading. A second meeting was staged the next year on Monday 5th April 1841. Racing then ceased in Buckenham, but steeplechasing did return in 1865 under the banner of New Buckenham.

This racecourse is covered in Volume 1 of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons Mr Betts, Mr Rush, Mr Ball
Principal Races Buckenham Hurdle, Buckenham Sweepstakes

Monday 6th April 1840

Buckenham Sweepstakes
1. Unnamed horse owned by Mr Rush
2. Unnamed mare owned by Mr Betts
3. Unnamed horse owned by Mr Ball

Buckenham Hurdle over 2 miles and 4 sets of hurdles
1. Harkaway owned by Mr Betts
2. Jack-o-Lanthorn

The final meeting took place on Monday 5th April 1841
Course today Spread over 5 meadows on the edge of the village, each circuit containing 6 leaps.
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

Copies of the above books are only available by emailing johnwslusar@gmail.com 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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