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Earliest meeting: Friday 8th June 1731
Final meeting: Wednesday 22nd June 1763
The Greater Manchester town of Wigan stands on the River Douglas 16 miles North-West of Manchester. Historically Wigan was in Lancashire and was a thriving mill town and coal mining area.The first race meeting held in the town was on Friday 8th June 1731, with Baily’s Racing Register providing detailed results showing the 40 Guineas Plate went to Lord Derby’s Tickle-Pitcher at the expense of Faustina. The next year a 3 day meeting began on Thursday 12th June with a 40 Guineas Purse which was won by Patch Buttocks, and ended two days later when Mr Purleston’s Surly beat Sir R Grosvenor’s favourite Terror. Meetings continued for a further 30 years, including a 3 day card staged from Monday 6th to Wednesday 8th July 1761 with a delightful outcome on the first day. How conincidental was it that two different owners entered their horses in the Give and Take race, the winner called Sweetest When Clothed, the third horse called Sweetest When Naked? The final meeting was held from Monday 20th to Wednesday 22nd June 1763 on Emberswood Common.

This racecourse is covered in Volume 1 of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons Lord Derby, Sir R Grosvenor, Mr Jenison
Principal Races Wigan 40 Guineas Plate, Wigan 20 & 40 Guineas Purses

Friday 8th June 1731

Wigan 40 Guineas Plate
1. Tickle-Pitcher owned by Lord Derby
2. Faustina owned by Mr Jenison

Thursday 12th to Saturday 14th June 1732

Wigan 40 Guineas Purse
1. Patch Buttocks owned by Mr Rickaby
2. Emma owned by Mr Bright

Wigan 20 Guineas Purse
1. Surly owned by Mr Purleston
2. Terror owned by Sir R Grosvenor

Monday 6th - Wednesday 8th July 1761

Monday 6th July 1761 Wigan Give and Take
1. Sweetest When Clothed owned by Mr Greathead
2. Tawney owned by Mr Turner
3. Sweetest When Naked owned by Mr Cowling

Tuesday 7th July 1761 Wigan Purse
1. Constant Billy owned by Mr Eller
2. Heart of Oak owned by Mr Cowling
3. Single-peeper owned by Mr Chatburn

Wednesday 8th July 1761 Wigan Subscription
1. That’s The Thing owned by Mr Chatburn
2. Smart owned by Mr Newall
3. Dusty Miller owned by Mr Oxley
4. Shove’em owned by Mr Spence

The final meeting took place on Wednesday 22nd June 1763.
Course today On Emberswood Common.
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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