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Earliest meeting: Friday 24th October 1851
Final meeting: Wednesday 26th October 1853
The Midlothian town of Dalkeith, on the River Esk, grew up around its 12th century castle now called Dalkeith Palace. Back in the middle of the 19th century races were organised in the town on a regular basis, although the first meeting widely reported in the press was on Friday 24th October 1851. The course was in a field on the edge of the town, owned by Mr Plummer of Newbattle. The opening Sweepstake went to Luxury who defeated The Tartar, while the feature Silver Mounted Whip race was won by Elopement. A second meeting was staged the next year on Tuesday 26th October 1852 when Luxury again won the opening event, while the Whip went to Mr W Shank’s Outcast. The final meeting took place on Wednesday 26th October 1853 when entries were made at the Bay Horse Inn. Strict rules were in operation which stated, ‘on the day of the races a bell will be rung for saddling, and a second bell for going to the post. Only those horses ready within 5 minutes of the second bell will be allowed to start’. Races of minor significance did continue after this date, although they did not receive full press coverage.

This racecourse is covered in Volume 3 of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons Mr R Graham, Mr W Shank
Principal Races Silver Mounted Whip, Dalkeith Sweepstake

Friday 24th October 1851
Silver Mounted Whip
1. Elopement, bay mare owned by Mr R Graham
2. Sir John Franklin, chestnut mare owned by Mr Peter Adam
3. Sir Astley Cooper, chestnut mare owned by Mr Dobbie

The final meeting took place on Wednesday 26th October 1853.
Course today In fields owned by Mr Plummer on the edge of the town.
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.
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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