This happy crowd of racegoers pictured at Dundee’s Longhaugh Racecourse are celebrating the course’s 90th birthday this year in period costume. Unfortunately the racecourse which opened in April 1924 and attracted a crowd of around 30,000 and 200 bookies to its opening two day meeting didn’t make it beyond 1925. It would had it survived have been the most northerly race course in the British Isles a title held these days by Perth Racecourse.
Now I wasn’t around in the 1920s I hasten to add but my father was a small boy at the time and when he grew up had a serious interest in the geegees. As kids we were taken to Racing at Ayr Hamilton Lanark Redcar Beverley and more and they were great days out of which I have happy memories. My dad was also a follower of horses with a local connection to Dundee such as the three Broughty horses – Broughty Castle Broughty Harbour and Broughty Pier. Broughty Harbour was the most successful and in the late 1970s Dad won nearly £400 on him one day (a huge amount to us then)sending my brothers and myself round different bookies in the city to collect winnings before telling Mum. At that point she didn’t have grounds for protest though the money was soon reallocated to the bookies in the time honoured way.
But what surprised me on just finding out about Longhaugh (in the North East of the City) is that my father didn’t mention it I find it hard to believe that it wasn’t in his encyclopaedic knowledge of the racing scene. And I’m doubly surprised by the fact that my other half who went to Primary School in the area and has a hugely impressive knowledge of the history of Dundee has never mentioned it either! One City Many Discoveries indeed!