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Earliest meeting: Thursday 19th April 1855
Final meeting: Wednesday 21st April 1875
The East Yorkshire market town of Howden lies 17 miles south east of the city of York and just 3 miles north of Goole. Well before the Norman invasion King Edgar gave his wife Ethelfleda Howden Manor in 959, and in 1080 the town was given to the Bishop of Durham by none other than William The Conqueror. Almost 800 years later the town held its own race meeting, with the inaugural card taking place in April 1855. The course of just over a mile was on the Howdendike Road and was not entirely suitable, as it had trees and hedgerows in the centre which blanked some aspects of the races. The principal race was the Howdenshire Handicap Steeplechase which was widely and proudly advertised as being ‘open to all England’. The meetings were well supported and continued for the next 20 years until a final card was staged on Wednesday 21st April 1875. At that meeting the Open Hunters’ Stakes was won by Mr R Hall’s Tritonia, while the concluding Consolation Scramble over 2 miles went to Mr Nelson’s Orange Girl.

This racecourse is covered in Volume 1 of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons Lord Londesborough, Lord Hotham, Hon. Admiral Duncombe
Principal Races Howdenshire Handicap Steeplechase, Howden Open Hunters’ Stakes

Wednesday 21st April 1875
Goole & Marshland Hunters’ Stakes over 2 ½ miles
1. Nick of the Woods, 6 year old owned by Mr Wardrop
2. Shaneen, 5 year old owned by Mr W Wood
3. Orange Girl, aged horse owned by Mr G Nelson
Betting 2/1 ON Nick of the Woods, 5/2 Shaneen, 5/1 Orange Girl

The final meeting took place on Wednesday 21st April 1875.

Course today A one mile course on the Howdendike Road.
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.
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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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