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Earliest meeting: Tuesday 11th March 1851
Final meeting: Monday 29th March 1852
The Cumbrian village of Milnthorpe was historically part of the old county of Westmorland and stands near the River Bela. Its most famous building is the Grade 1 listed Dallam Tower and it has been granted a market for some considerable time.  It is ideally placed on the A6 and back in the middle of the 19th century the village held its own races. It first announced its interest in racing at the annual sports days on Friday 9th and Saturday 10th September 1842 when it held a trotting race which was won by Mr Richard Simpson. However, on Tuesday 11th March 1851 it organised its inaugural steeplechase meeting. The chosen course was on Mr Edward Askew’s farm at Overthwaite, within walking distance of Milnthorpe; the course contained 7 leaps and one stone fence. The opening Handicap Sweepstakes was won by Mr Tienan’s Isaac who beat Wild Hero. The Hunters Stakes saw Deceiver get the better of a field of four. After racing, Ordinaries were served at the Cross Keys Inn and the King’s Arms. On Monday 29th March 1852 a second meeting was staged on ground behind the workhouse, with 12 leaps and the obligatory stone wall. The Handicap Sweepstakes went to Mr Strickland’s Denouncer, who beat Heroine and Falcon, while the concluding Selling Stakes fell to Mr Lamplugh’s Gay Lad.

This racecourse is covered in Volume 1 of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons Mr W C Strickland, Mr George Woodburn, Mr J Fell (Stewards)
Principal Races Milnthorpe Hunters Stakes, Handicap Sweepstakes, Selling Stakes

Tuesday 11th March 1851
Milnthorpe Hunters Stakes over 1 ¼ miles
1. Deceiver, aged horse owned by Mr Milne
2. Elemore, aged horse owned by Mr Hollinshead
3. Denouncer, aged horse owned by Mr Strickland
4. The Nun, aged mare owned by Mr Fell

The only recorded meeting took place on Monday 29th March 1852.

Course today A course of 7 leaps and a stone wall on Mr Askew’s farm at Overthwaite.
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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