Those who pass the Horse and Groom pub on Carholme Road will probably pay no mind to how it got the name. And of those that do know the pub’s history, some will be curious as to why it has clung to its heritage.
One could say it goes back to 1853, when the inaugural race of the Lincoln Handicap took place – or even earlier, when a race called the Lincolnshire Handicap was run over two miles at Lincoln in August 1849.
The Lincoln Spring Handicap, four years later, was run at a new fixture in February. Originally it was run over a mile and a half, but the distance was reduced to a mile in 1855, and the contest moved to March. In 1859 these two races merged to become the Lincolnshire Handicap.
The race was run in Lincoln up until 1964, at the Carholme Racecourse. In 1965, the race was renamed the Lincoln Handicap, and moved to Doncaster.
The Carholme racecourse remains, but it a shadow of its former self.
However, there is more than just one trace of Lincoln’s equestrian legacy in that part of the city.
Park Riding School, located on Newland Street West, has stood for sixty years, tucked away in a quiet area of residential Lincoln, with access to what is now West Common, where the former racecourse stood. Check out our interview with Carol Wilson, who oversees the operation.
Horses can be found grazing across the whole West Common, which dates back to the 11th Century and has historical grazing rights. It is a designated site of critical asset. The common also hosts a population of skylark.
Article posted by Alex.