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Littlemore Greyhound Track, Sandy Lane, Cowley, Oxford, Oxfordshire.

POSTCODE————————————OX4 6LJ.

LOCATED————————————–About two and a half miles south west of Oxford city centre in the district of Cowley.

ORIGINAL SITE——————————-Farm grazing land.

DATE CONSTRUCTED———————-Early 1930’s.

DATE VENUE OPENED———————Maybe 1930
Meaning other sports may have taken place prior to the arrival of Greyhound Racing.

FIRST MEETING——————————Not known.
Greyhound Racing only.

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——–A trackless hare pulled along by the rear wheel of a jacked up motor car.
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————————————350 and 525 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—————————-Not known.
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—————————-None found.


LAST MEETING——————————-Possibly 1938. 
Greyhound Racing only.

Meaning other sports may have taken place after Greyhound Racing had ceased.


BUILT ON SITE——————————–Although still closed since 2012, the present Oxford Cowley Greyhound Stadium occupies the site although the track itself runs in a different compass direction.
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 found.

FURTHER COMMENTS———————The track lay in a north to south direction.

Above, the Littlemore track during 1937, compare it to the 1955 map below of the Oxford Cowley venue. Both maps courtesy of Old Maps.
This caption above is out of the local press dated January 1934.

When discussing the sport of Greyhound Racing in Oxford, one presumes we are talking about the NGRC track that closed in December 2012. But this section describes what is hidden beneath its foundations, which happens to be the site of an old flapping track which developed throughout the 1930’s yet closed to make way for a purpose-built Greyhound Racing stadium in 1938.

The venue was situated in the district of Cowley, a district more famous for its motor manufacturing industry, and lay roughly two and a half miles southwest of Oxford city centre. The old track opened in 1930 on farmland north of Sandy Lane, which in those days was a large rural area, compared to today’s housing estates that now covers most of the surrounds.

The early greyhound track lay in a North to South direction meaning that its position was virtually 45 degrees anti-clockwise to where the present Oxford track lay. It operated as a flapping track with greyhounds chasing a trackless lure pulled by the rear wheel of a jacked-up motor car.

Its closure came during 1938 after a new greyhound company had purchased the site with the view of staging NGRC racing, which in turn witnessed a total transformation of the site. As explained previous, the old Sandy Lane track is pinpointed by the present Cowley Stadium, which gingerly still survives, even with a greyhound track that remained redundant for ten years, yet the Go-Kart track that worms its way around the infield of the track still keeps the place ticking over.