Archive for February, 2016

WordPress dates this 14 February, but I’ve posted it on the 28th, having realised no post appeared a fortnight ago – even though I wrote it then and scheduled it.  You can’t get the staff nowadays.  The main news is that the long-awaited Racing Post review of the Uttoxeter book was a nice long one. It was in the 7 February paper and I can only hope it will encourage some orders from the racing world.  The reviewer said the course now has “a biography that does it justice”.  It was accompanied by a small picture of the front cover and a larger one of me!  I don’t want to seem churlish, but a photo showing something of the racecourse itself might have been more appealing.

I also learned that January’s Staffordshire Life has a well illustrated double-page spread about the book. Unfortunately it doesn’t say where you can buy it.  Hopefully anyone who is interested will try the racecourse, or trace me on the internet.  I discovered this from a lady who wanted to buy a copy and have me send it to her uncle, who used to be a trainer.  The peak of his career was training a Grand National winner.  That was quite a long time ago, but coincidentally it was the one National I attended.

Some time ago I accepted an assignment to write a magazine article about a specific aspect of Bath’s racing history. That’s been completed – ahead of the deadline – and once I know it’s been printed I shall plug it here.

I had to fit that in while doing Uttoxeter and Windsor. There was a surprise development on the Windsor front when a line of enquiry that I thought had petered out was revived.  This particular correspondent answered my email after about a six month gap.  We then spoke on the phone for three quarters of an hour and I obtained more useful information about one of the families who used to manage the racecourse.  I am optimistic there might be some photos from a family album to come.  This is all very welcome, although earlier in the process would have been nicer!

I’m now two thirds of the way through my first review of the Windsor draft.  This is going to knock it into much better shape, I think.  Once I’ve finished it’ll be back to the beginning to go through it again!

Last week I was escorted round Clewer, the village next to the racecourse, by Mick, an annual member who lives a mile or so away and was born closer than that.  He kindly gave me a guided tour and his memories of the village when the stable block used to be there.  We finished up in the Windsor Lad, a pub named after a Derby winner of the 1930s who sadly had no connection with Windsor other than the name.

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