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Earliest meeting: Tuesday 7th August 1821
Final meeting: Tuesday 20th May 1834
The Cumberland and Westmorland town of Kendal first held races on a new course to the West of the town in 1821. The 3 day meeting began on Tuesday 7th August, although racegoers would have been disappointed by a walk-over and a Maiden Plate. However, they would have been happier on Wednesday 8th August because the Kendal Gold Cup was won by Lord Queensberry’s Miss Syntax and the Kendal Town Plate went to Miss Wiks. The course was situated on Fisher’s Plain, at the foot of the local Scout Scar, and welcomed an immense crowd for the final day of the meeting on Thursday 9th August. Meetings continued to be held annually, with the feature race each year being the Kendal Gold Cup. At the meeting on Wednesday 4th August 1824 the Gold Cup was won by Young Corrector owned by Mr Simpson. The final meeting took place on 20th May 1834, although racing returned to the town for a four year period from 1879-82. The meetings between 1879 and 1882 offered National Hunt cards containing both Flat and Hurdle races, each over 2 miles. The curtain finally came down on Kendal races in 1882 when Mr C J Cunningham celebrated a treble, scoring with Central Fire and Lindisfarne twice.

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

Lord Queensberry, Sir P Musgrave, Major Cuninghame, General Sharpe

Principal Races Gold Cup, Cavalry Stakes, Town Plate

Tuesday 7th August 1821

Kendall Sweepstakes over 3 miles
1. Unnamed Bay filly by Marmion owned by Mr Robinson walked over

Kendall Maiden Plate over 2 miles
1. Unnamed filly by Marmion owned by Mr Robinson
2. Unnamed colt by Marmion owned by Mr Field
3. The Palmer owned by Mr McMinnie

Wednesday 8th August 1821

Kendall Gold Cup over 3 miles
1. Miss Syntax owned by Lord Queensberry walked over

Kendall Town Plate over 2 miles
1. Miss Wilks, a bay filly owned by Mr T Hutchinson
2. Creeping Kate, a bay mare owned by Mr Blizard
3. Miss Syntax, a bay mare owned by Lord Queensberry

Thursday 9th August 1821

Kendall Hunters’ Stakes over 2 miles
1. Holdforth, a bay gelding owned by Mr W Hutchinson
2. Black Rock, a bay gelding owned by Mr Read
3. Fearnought, a bay gelding owned by Mr T Parkinson

Kendall Handicap Sweepstakes
1. Unnamed filly by Corrector owned by Mr Simpson
2. The Palmer, a brown horse owned by Mr McMinnie
3. Unnamed grey colt by Marmion owned by Mr Field

Tuesday 3rd August to Thursday 5th August 1824

Kendal Cavalry Stakes over 2 miles
1. Maid of the Mill owned by Mr W B Hodgson

Kendal Gold Cup worth £50 to the winner over 3 miles
1. Young Corrector owned by Mr Simpson
2. North Briton owned by Mr Ferguson
3. Sir Henry owned by Mr Hudson

Kendal Town Plate over 2 miles
1. Sir Roger owned by Mr Bretherton
2. Sir Henry owned by Mr Hudson
3. Young Corrector owned by Mr Simpson

I am grateful to Tony Nash for the rare scan of a trophy from Kendal races in the 1820's.

Course today It is still possible to walk on various parts of the racecourse to this day with a footpath leading from Brigsteer Road and on across Bradley Field. There was a natural stone mound for viewing and evidence of this remains.
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:-

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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