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Earliest meeting: Wednesday 29th September 1841
Final meeting: Thursday 1st June 1911
The County Wexford town of Enniscorthy today boasts a population in excess of 10000, and lays claim to being the second largest town in the county. Back in the mid-19th century it was much smaller and more rural, but still organised race meetings as early as 1841. It is likely that there were minor races before this, although they were not widely reported. A two day meeting was staged on Wednesday 29th and Thursday 30th September 1841 on a one mile course at Oak-Hall. The day opened with the Tradesmen’s Plate which was won by Mr Ferguson’s Bounceaway, as was the later Sweepstake. In between the Hunters’ Plate was won by The Midge for Mr Pearson. After racing on the first day a Race Ball was held in the Town Hall. Meetings continued for 4 more years after which racing lapsed. There was talk of a revival in 1854 and a meeting certainly took place on Saturday 24th May 1862 on the Ballycoursey course, just a mile from the town centre in the basin of the River Slaney, although the card also included pony and hack races. Towards the end of the 19th century racing was revived and on Wednesday 14th June 1899 the Railway Handicap went to Mr O’Kehoe’s The Chief, while the feature Town Plate was claimed by Mr W P Cullen’s Lillian Noel. Crowds declined in the early 20th century to such an extent that the final meeting took place on Thursday 1st June 1911.

This racecourse is covered in Volume 4 of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons Captain Knight, John Maher, R.Rathbourne (Stewards), Mr Bradlaw, Mr O Kehoe
Principal Races Enniscorthy Town Plate, Railway Handicap Plate

Thursday 30th September 1841
Enniscorthy Tradesmen’s Plate over 2 ½ miles
1. Bounceaway, chestnut gelding owned by Mr Ferguson
2. Kilmoyler, bay colt owned by Mr O’Meagher
3. Organ, brown colt owned by Captain Knight

Wednesday 14th June 1899

The Railway Handicap Plate over 7 furlongs
1. The Chief owned by Mr O Kehoe
2. Billy Diver owned by Mr W Hoey
3. Green Tree owned by Mr M Foley

The Enniscorthy Town Plate over a mile and a half
1. Lillian Noel owned by Mr W P Cullen
2. Millpark owned by Mr G H Lett
3. Star Chamber owned by Mr Bradlaw

The final meeting took place on Thursday 1st June 1911.
Course today Initially at Oak-Hall and then on the Ballycoursey course.
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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Volume 1 North of Hatfield £19.99 + £4 postage    
Volume 2 South of Hatfield £14.99 + £3 postage    
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Volume 4 Ireland £9.99 + £3 postage    
Volumes 1 - 4 £54.96 + £5 postage    
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