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POOLSTOCK GREYHOUND STADIUM SUMMARY

ADDRESS————————————–

Park Street
Poolstock
Wigan
Greater Manchester.

POSTCODE———————————-WN3 5HG

LOCATED————————————-About three quarters of a mile south of Wigan town centre.

ORIGINAL SITE——————————A Bowling club and garden allotments.

DATE CONSTRUCTED———————1931-32.

DATE VENUE OPENED——————–March 1932.
Meaning other sports may have taken place prior to the arrival of Greyhound Racing.

FIRST MEETING—————————–March 9th 1932.
Greyhound Racing only.

LICENSED OR INDEPENDENT———-Independent
All venues covered would have to be  licensed with the government, licensed suggested in this section would refer to tracks operating under NGRC Rules.

INSIDE OR OUTSIDE HARE TYPE——Inside Sumner.
Please note that the Electric Hare suggested is only a guidance, and would have been in operation for a certain amount of time at this venue. Although it is not necessarily guaranteed that it was operational all the time, as other types of lure may have been used and updated as time progressed.

DISTANCES———————————-314, 530 and 750 yards.
Please note that most racing venues distances had become varied throughout the years, the ones given above were at once point set and offers only a guidance to the track size.

CIRCUMFERENCE————————–456 yards.
Please note that alterations at most racing venues throughout its existence would see that the circumference of the track would vary, the one shown above offers only a guidance to the track size.

BIG RACE NAMES————————–Nothing to mention.

STADIUM SHARED WITH—————–Speedway team Wigan Warriors featured in 1947 then again during 1960.

LAST MEETING——————————February 28th 1973.
Greyhound Racing only.

STADIUM CLOSURE DATE—————February 1973.
Meaning other sports may have taken place after Greyhound Racing had ceased.

STADIUM DEMOLITION——————-1973

BUILT ON SITE——————————-Houses on Baker Street and Ryton Close constructed during 1977.
In some cases, structure’s that originally covered the venue after the stadium had been demolished, may have been themselves demolished too, so the one described is more likely to be the one which now presently covers the site.

EVIDENCE LEFT TODAY——————-None known of.

FURTHER COMMENTS——————–The famous comedy duo Laurel and Hardy attended a Speedway meeting back in April 1947.

The venue appears at the  bottom left of this 1956 OS Map. Courtesy of Old Maps.
A good crowd attends Poolstock during the late 1940’s.
Three images of a programme dated February 1st 1969.
Back page results.
Two adverts printed in The Greyhound Owner newspaper, above dated May 1965, below October 1972.

A photo finish dated 1972.
The Greyhound Owner announces Poolstock’s closure in March 1973.
This caption printed in the local press.
Derelict Poolstock around the late 1970’s with total demolition on the horizon.

Another of the Lancashire towns blessed with two greyhound racing venues was the borough of Wigan. Although greyhound racing was experienced for the first time back in 1928, on the track at Woodhouse Lane, this section describes the second one known as The Poolstock Stadium. Named after the district in which it was found, Poolstock Greyhound Stadium was situated roughly three quarters of a mile south of Wigan town centre. The venue had been constructed on an abandoned cluster of garden allotments, and also the site of an old bowling club which lay adjacent to the River Douglas. Although classed as an independent track, Poolstock was to stage events under rules similar to those of the NGRC, ready for its opening meeting on the 9th of March 1932. It was during 1946 that Poolstock witnessed further developments, after it was announced that Speedway Racing would take place at the venue. After a cinder circuit had been laid within the infield of the greyhound track, Speedway was given the go ahead to stage its first meeting on the 4th of April 1947. A crowd of just under 5,000 packed the stadium to see Speedway feature for the first time. Although it was a healthy figure indeed, the number had been swelled by the visit of the famous comedy duo Laurel and Hardy, who did a lap of honour on the rear of an open top Jeep, with both chaps wearing their familiar bowler hats. Attendances for speedway remained healthy throughout the summer months of 1947, but a dispute between the track owners and the Speedway promoters left the Speedway team without a home venue by October of that year. Speedway did make a brief return once again thirteen years later in 1960, holding just eight events during that year. During the 1950’s Stock Car Racing was another motor sport to feature, but the sport failed to win the imagination of the Wigan public and failed to return after just a brief spell only. As for Greyhound Racing at Poolstock, the narrowness of the track width, had seen races consist of five greyhounds only, with the hounds chasing an inside Sumner type hare. Poolstock in its heyday could be best described as a big galloping track, with races being staged over distances of 314, 530 and 750 yards. By the early 1970’s the stadium had become run down and was certainly in need of some sort of cash investment, but its close proximity to the town centre had caught the imagination of developers which in turn witnessed the ten acre site being sold. Sadly, Poolstock staged its final meeting on the 28th of February 1973, with anything of any value becoming sold off soon after. The site soon became target for vandals, with anything of value falling in to the hands of thieves, before nature came along and totally overwhelmed the site, and by 1977 the stadium lay in a derelict state. What was left of the venue became demolished, and by the end of the 1970’s new housing began to cover the site. Today it is very unlikely that you will find any evidence of the old Poolstock Stadium, as houses situated on either side of Baker Street, plus a handful on Ryton Close, now covers the entire site.

A programme, photograph or even memorabilia for this track is required for this page, if you can help please contact me.