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ASKERN GREYHOUND STADIUM SUMMARY

ADDRESS————————————-

Selby Road
Askern
Nr Doncaster
South Yorkshire.

POSTCODE————————————-DN6 0ES

LOCATED—————————————The town of Askern is situated about 7 miles north of Doncaster, with the track being about four and a half miles south of junction 34 of the M62, and about half a mile north of Askern town centre, along side the A19.

ORIGINAL SITE——————————–Farm grazing land.

DATE CONSTRUCTED———————–During the 1930’s.

DATE VENUE OPENED———————-Unconfirmed 1939.
Meaning other sports may have taken place prior to the arrival of Greyhound Racing.

FIRST MEETING——————————-Possibly 1939.
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———Once inside Sumner now outside Swaffham.
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————————————-225, 425 and 600 metres. 
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—————————-Dont know
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—————————-Askern Greyhound Derby.

STADIUM SHARED WITH——————Local amateur football club and Whippet Racing.

LAST MEETING——————————-N/A
Greyhound Racing only.

STADIUM CLOSURE DATE—————-Still in operation.
Meaning other sports may have taken place after Greyhound Racing had ceased.

STADIUM DEMOLITION——————–N/A

BUILT ON SITE——————————–N/A
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——————–N/A

FURTHER COMMENTS———————One of only five flapping tracks in the UK still operational. The venue  closed in 1972 for reasons not known, and did not open again until 1977.

This Greyhound Owner cutting from December 1950, mentions Askern as a Whippet Racing venue during 1939.
Askern as it was in 2002. Courtesy of Google Earth.
A caption from a Greyhound Star of October 2005, announces big changes in the running surface at Askern.
Askern transformed pictured in 2008. Courtesy of Google Earth.
A view to the entrance and car park from the A19.
The start and finish straight.

A judges box view of the 4 bend starting traps.
A judges box view of the first bend.
This advert found in a 1997 Greyhound Monthly magazine.
A racecard from 1998.
A panoramic view of Askern during 2015.
Askern Greyhound Stadium 2018. Courtesy of Google Earth.

Seven miles north of Doncaster is the civil parish of Askern, and it is here in this ex mining community lies one of only five flapping tracks still in operation throughout the UK. Askern Greyhound Stadium lies along the side of the busy A19 Selby Road, four and a half miles south of junction 34 of the M62. The venue had developed during the late 1930’s on a three and a half acre section of farm land known as Norton Common, virtually overlooked by a busy railway mainline. Although details remain sketchy regarding Askern’s first encounters with greyhound racing, unconfirmed suggestions say that the venue applied for a license in 1938 and that racing began during 1939, although its first evidence of its existence is proved by the track showing up on a 1948 ordnance survey map. If these facts are true then Askern may have operated during the Second World War, and like most other flapping tracks would have operated during daylight hours only. No doubt Askern was in full swing for racing during the early 1950’s, but in 1972 the track closed and was instantly put up for auction. Over the next five years the venue remained closed for racing, but a return in 1977 had seen the track re-open once more, this time under new management. Its D shaped track had found itself one of the shortest circuits in Greyhound Racing, with a circumference of just under 350 yards or 315 metres in metric terms. The Summer of 2005 had seen a total revamp of the running circuit, after the adjacent field had been purchased with a view of extending the track. The changes had seen original D shaped track extended, and relayed to form a more regular oval shape circuit. A new racing distance had been extended by 25 metres to the present 425 metres four bend trip, yet the finishing line still remained in its original position directly beneath the judges box. Further changes had seen a new outside Swaffham hare installed, which would then replace the old inside Sumner type. Today, Askern finds itself as one of only two flapping tracks that still operates in Yorkshire, yet still offers two well attended meetings per week, with six hounds contesting over distances of 225, 425 and 600 metres.