NEWCASTLE (White City) GREYHOUND STADIUM SUMMARY
White City Stadium
Tyne & Wear.
LOCATED————————————Four miles west of Newcastle City centre, and south of the River Tyne, just off the A695 opposite Scotswood Bridge.
ORIGINAL SITE—————————–Built on unused land next to the LNER Redheugh Branch Railway Line.
DATE VENUE OPENED——————-May 1928.
Meaning other sports may have taken place prior to the arrival of Greyhound Racing.
FIRST MEETING—————————–May 26th 1928.
Greyhound Racing only.
LICENSED OR INDEPENDENT———-NGRC.
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———————————–325, 525, 550 and 700 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.
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 found.
STADIUM SHARED WITH——————Athletics, Rugby Union and Women’s International Football.
LAST MEETING——————————-May 26th 1951.
Greyhound Racing only.
STADIUM CLOSURE DATE—————-1952
Meaning other sports may have taken place after Greyhound Racing had ceased.
STADIUM DEMOLITION——————-Early 1950’s.
BUILT ON SITE——————————-Tata Steel Stockists Building.
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——————-Nothing known of.
When looking back to the 1930’s, Newcastle’s greyhound fraternity had lived through a decade were they had as many as five NGRC greyhound tracks to choose from. Venues such as Brough Park, Gosforth Park, South Shields and Redheugh Park at Gateshead, offered a busy schedule of meetings for its racegoers. But the fifth track to be mentioned, happened to be Tyneside’s first, and also had on its CV as the shortest operating life span of them all, just 23 years. It was known as the White City Stadium, Newcastle, located four miles south of Newcastle city centre, just across the River Tyne in the district known as Blaydon, not for from one of the rivers busiest crossing points, Scotswood Bridge. It was constructed during 1928 on a section of land hemmed in between Scotswood Road and a busy railway line, ready for its opening on the 26th of May, almost four weeks prior to the opening of today’s Brough Park. The new venue had been part of the GRA’s ambitious plans to construct large venues around the larger cities of the UK, as part of their project to promote the new sport of Greyhound Racing. The first meeting became a total shambles, with the first race being delayed due to an escaped greyhound on the track. Once things did get under way, the electric hare broke down halfway round the circuit during the first race, then later more misery for the organisers, as the majority of greyhounds just wanted to fight each other rather than race. Once teething problems were overcome, Greyhound Racing at White City began to improve vastly, given proof by the numbers attending meetings. When constructed the venue had been designed to host others sports also, such as Rugby Union and Athletics, even hosting international women’s football in 1938. Distances were run over 325, 525, 550 and 700 yards, with six greyhounds normally chasing an inside Sumner type hare. The track as a business venture, proved itself financially, with tote takings exceeding the one million pound mark virtually every year right up until 1947, even through the restrictions set during the Second World War. But new gambling legislation set during the post war years, became the main factor to the stadiums decline. With tote figure’s rapidly declining, the government’s set a new tax rate of 62% on all takings, which brought with it close scrutiny of all greyhound tracks. The new laws were enough for the promoters to quit the sport, seeing White City, Newcastle staging their final race meeting on the 26th of May 1951 ,exactly 23 years after it had opened. The greyhound track was dug up and was replaced by an Athletics track with Blaydon Harriers making it their home. But Athletics failed to get the recognition expected from the public, which in turn contributed to the total closure of the venue in 1952. Today the site is covered by a company called Tata Steel Stockists, and is found set back just off Chain Bridge Road, and sadly leaves no evidence at all of the stadium’s existence.
A photograph or memorabilia for this track is required for this page, if you can help please contact me.