Newcastle Stadium Guide

In the wake of the first greyhound race on an oval track at Belle Vue in Manchester in 1927, new stadiums began to spring up all over the country. Newcastle Stadium was one such venue, opening its doors for the first time on the 23rd of June in 1928. Interestingly, it was actually the second greyhound track to open in the city, with Tyneside Sports Stadium Limited opening White City Stadium the month before.

White City Stadium went to the dogs (pun intended) in 1951, but Newcastle Stadium is still going strong. When it opened it was called Brough Park but when William Hill bought it in 2003 they looked to renovate the track and also rebrand it. As it was the only greyhound stadium still standing in the Northeast city, it made sense to name it simply Newcastle Stadium. It promises an excellent night out full of entertainment and laugher.

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Race Days & Times

Newcastle Stadium has five meetings over four days. The main racing takes place on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday evenings. There are also Bookmaker Afternoon Greyhound Service races on Wednesdays and Saturdays. These are mainly for the benefit of bookies and television companies, but you’re welcome to attend if you want.

Tuesday races start at 6.28pm and the doors open at 6pm, with the doors opening at the same time on a Thursday evening but the first race not getting underway until 6.38pm. On Saturdays, the doors open at 6.15pm and the first race starts at 7.39pm - that’s party night, after all. Wednesday’s BAGS meeting kicks off at 11.11am but you can have a wonder around the stadium from 1.30am, whilst on Saturdays the first BAGS race is at 2.24pm and doors open at 1.30pm.

Visiting

  • Ticket Prices: If you’re not sure whether greyhound racing is really for you then you’ll want to head along to one of the BAGS meetings. Both the Wednesday races and those on Saturday are free to watch. Tuesday and Thursday meetings will set you back £5, whilst the Saturday evening races will cost you £6 to watch.
  • Getting There: Newcastle Stadium is in a suburb of the city called Walker and is around 15-minutes from the city centre in a car. It’s just off the A187 if you’re going to drive. When it comes to public transport, the Metro is one of the best ways to get around the city and both Byker and Chillingham Road stops on the yellow line are within walking distance. Coaster 1 and 1A buses, as well as the 22 and the Blue Arrow 11 all stop close by.
  • Parking: Right in front of the stadium is a large car park that can fit cars, motorbikes, vans and coaches.

History

It’s unclear whether it was coincidence or by design that a greyhound stadium was developed in the Walker/Byker area of Newcastle just weeks after one had opened by the Scotswood Bridge. What we do know is that the White City Stadium had financing from the Greyhound Racing Association, so they had a vested (and literal) investment in seeing it succeed. The plot chosen for Brough Park, as it was back then, was an area that was being developed and had previously been some garden allotments.

For the first ten years of the stadiums existence things went smoothly but there wasn’t a huge degree of interest in it. In 1938, the All England Cup was introduced and it suddenly became very popular indeed. The prize money was quite significant and some of the best trainers and dogs from the South began to attend the course to try to get their hands in it. Racing was interrupted by the outbreak of the Second World War, but the 1946 All England Cup found itself in the unique situation of hosting all four of England’s national Derby champions at the same time.

It was the 1960s that saw Brough Park go through some of its most significant changes. In 1964 it was bought by the Totalisators and Greyhound Holdings and they brought in a new General Manager and Racing Manager to get things up to spec. Exactly a decade later TGH was bought out by Ladbrokes so the park fell into their hands. In 1977, a new race called the Trainers Championship was introduced and it still runs to this day. In 1983, Glassedin Greyhounds Limited bought it from Ladbrokes and it remained under their ownership until William Hill bought it in 2003.

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