Powderhall Stadium formerly the Powderhall Grounds was a greyhound racing track in Edinburgh, Scotland. It was located on Beaverhall Road, in the Powderhall (Broughton) area of northern Edinburgh, beside the Water of Leith. The track closed in 1995 and the site is now a housing estate.
|Renovated||1970 & 1987|
|Expanded||1927 greyhounds |
The Powderhall Grounds was built in 1869 and gained fame for being the place where Olympian Eric Liddell, portrayed in Chariots of Fire, trained in the 1920s. The stadium was converted for greyhound racing (opening on 3 August 1927) and football one year later, in 1928, when it hosted the original Edinburgh City football team.
Pre WWII historyEdit
When opened in 1927 the track had easy bends and long straights and over 10,000 attended the first meeting. The first race, the Leith Stakes was won by Eager Hands in 30.70 over 500 yards. The Greyhound Racing Association (GRA) acquired Powderhall becoming one of 19 GRA tracks at the time. The kennels were built on the west side of the stadium replacing an old football ground.
Major success was achieved in 1928 when Boher Ash trained by Tommy Johnston Sr. won the English Greyhound Derby, the first and only time a Scottish trained greyhound would win the sports premier event. The track situated below the 'Puddockie' as it was known locally (the Water of Leith) and a culvert ran under the track to allow the Puddockie to flow. The track circumference was 440 yards and facilities included a grandstand and two covered enclosures. The original hare was an outside 'bogie' and distances were 440, 500 and 700 yards but despite the culvert the track was prone to flooding. Edinburgh hosted four greyhound tracks, Stenhouse Stadium, Marine Gardens and a short lived independent track called Royal Gymnasium. The track introduced its own major event in 1933 and called it the Edinburgh Cup which saw early winners including Jesmond Cutlet, Wattle Bark and Dante II.
The venue was selected to host the Stewards Cup on several occasions and also hosted the BBC Television Trophy in 1964. In 1970 the stadium underwent renovation including a new 100 'Silver Hound' seated restaurant with a glass plated front to allow public viewing and bar areas increased to a total of seven. Bill Glennie was General Manager and Bill Mulley was Racing Manager replaced by Stuart Strachan in 1978 A heated blanket was constructed underneath the track to combat the Scottish winter and allow racing to go ahead during particularly cold spells.
The Scottish Grand National and Scottish St Leger both became popular events and in 1982 trainer Graham Mann was moved by the GRA to White City and his replacement was Jane Glass, the Scottish tracks first ever female trainer. Powderhall marked its 60th anniversary with a new £400,000 grandstand and in 1987 the track was handed the Scottish Greyhound Derby by the GRA (following problems at Shawfield), the first time the event was run outside of Glasgow.
After hosting the 1988 Scottish Derby the GRA sold the track to local businessman Norrie Rowan for £1.8m, the sale of the track resulted in two problems, the first was the fact that they lost the rights to hold the Scottish Derby because the GRA no longer had any investments in Scotland so the Derby returned to Glasgow. Secondly Norrie Rowan sold the track on to Coral for £2.2 million an instant profit of £400,000. During 1990 Rowan expressed the desire to buy the stadium back.
The locally trained Ravage Again nearly surpassed the Ballyregan Bob world record in 1990; trained by Willie Frew the 29 successive wins sequence came to an end on 26 January 1990.
Corals sold the stadium to Eddie Ramsay in 1992 for £3 million but his company SGRC (Scottish Greyhound Racing Company) was in financial difficulties and he sold it to a Channel Islands company called Charlotte Twenty-One (that included a shareholder called Walton Hankinson, a housing development specialist) during January 1995 for £3 million. The stadium closed in 1995  and was demolished for housing.
Powderhall was also used for football, being the home ground of Leith Athletic from 1926 to 1928 and Edinburgh City from 1931 to 1934. It later became a venue for motorcycle speedway, with the Edinburgh Monarchs racing there from 1977 until 1995.
Scottish Greyhound DerbyEdit
Scottish Grand NationalEdit
The Scottish Grand National was a competition held over hurdles from 1954 until the stadium closed.
|1954||Ruddy Caution||Bahs Choice – Pure Motive||Paddy McEvoy (Private)||28.95||7-2|
|1955||Prince Lawrence||Dangerous Prince - Knights Romance||Joe Pickering (New Cross)||29.24||5-1|
|1957||Fodda Champion||Champion Prince - Wimble Lady||Jimmy Jowett (Clapton)||29.04||1-3f|
|1958||Fodda Champion||Champion Prince - Wimble Lady||Jimmy Jowett (Clapton)||28.74|
|1959||Rialto Crown||Imperial Dancer – Quare Princess||Tom Lightfoot (White City)||29.72||10-1|
|1960||Dawn Dancer||Prince of Bermuda – Peaceful Dancer||Cyril Beaumont (Belle Vue)||29.18||4-9f|
|1961||Rorys Pleasure||Man of Pleasure – Banri Ordha||Joe Pickering (White City)||28.86|
|1962||Barrel Kissane||Champion Prince - Yoblstrap||Barney O'Connor (Walthamstow)||29.11|
|1963||Ascot||Carrickaroche Champion – Ash Look||Charlie Smoothy (New Cross)||29.32|
|1964||Banba's Son||Champions Son – Darkies Delight||Clare Orton (Wimbledon)||29.42|
|1965||Bolshoi Prince||The Grand Prince – Bolshoi Artiste||Norman Oliver (Brough Park)||29.26|
|1966||Halfpenny King||Crazy Parachute - The Baw Wee||John Shevlin (New Cross)||29.15|
|1967||Cross Champ||The Grand Prince - Anabanana||Alf Eggleston (Leeds)||29.43|
|1968||Ballintore Tiger||Prairie Flash – Not Landing||Tim Forster Harringay)||29.22|
|1969||Tonys Friend||Tontine – Maggie From Cork||Randy Singleton (White City)||29.68||4-7f|
|1970||Derry Palm||O'Leary – Fannie Caesar||Phil Rees Sr. (Wimbledon)||29.17||8-1|
|1974||Weston Pete||Monalee Champion – New Kashmir||Colin West (White City)||29.29||2-1|
|1975||Shamrock Blackie||Patricias Hope – Shanlyre Blackie||Tommy Foster (White City)||29.77||33-1|
|1976||Try It Blackie||Russian Gun – Gurteen Daisy||Frank Melville Harringay)||29.60||2-1jf|
|1977||Greenane Tyro||Monalee Champion – Fit Me In||Randy Singleton (White City)||29.01||3-1|
|1978||Topofthetide||Westpark Mint – Lady In Love||Tim Forster Harringay)||29.29||4-9f|
|1979||Scintillas Rock||Yanka Boy – Scintillas Mini||Frank Melville Harringay)||29.47||4-1|
|1980||Drakeland Jim||Currans Pad – Arctic Ann||Tommy Foster (White City)||29.21||6-4f|
|1981||1981 Bobcol||Westpark Mint – Black Katty||Norah McEllistrim (Wimbledon)||29.35||4-5f|
|1982||Face The Mutt||Mutts Silver – Millroad Cast||Reece (Middlesbrough)||28.99||1-3f|
|1983||Face The Lads||Luminous Lad – Mill Road Silver||Norah McEllistrim (Wimbledon)||29.00||9-2|
|1984||Lovely Pud||I'm Lovely – Lucky Una||G Rodgerson (Powderhall)||28.77||6-1|
|1985||Brendas Luck||Black Coat – Brendas Dream||Ron Bicknell (Milton Keynes)||28.99||5-1|
|1986||Moneypoint Sam||Liberty Lad – Queens Hotel||Bob Young (Brighton)||28.77||10-1|
|1987||Cavan Town||Sail On II – Leafy Glade||Mel Cumner (Maidstone)||28.68 TR||8-13f|
|1988||Kilcuala Prince||Dipmac – Hack Up Hostess||J.J Keane (Private)||29.28||3-1|
|1989||Skyline Prince||Shesign Rocket – Apache Laura||Linda Mullins (Romford)||28.65||7-2|
|1990||Gizmo Pasha||Whisper Wishes – If And When||Linda Mullins (Romford)||28.69||1-2f|
|1991||Deerpark Jim||Oran Jack – Saol Fada Sally||Linda Mullins (Walthamstow)||28.79||6-1|
|1992||Kildare Slippy||I'm Slippy – Kildare Elm||Paddy Hancox (Hall Green)||28.09||1-4f|
|1993||Last Years Man||Murlens Slippy – Junior Miss||Tommy Foster (Wimbledon)||28.71||4-1|
|1994||Heavenly Dream||Whisper Wishes – Sail On Jenny||Linda Mullins (Walthamstow)||28.46||15-8jf|
TR (Track record), 1954-1994 (500 yards, 465 metres), 1971-1973 (Not held)
Scottish St LegerEdit
The Scottish St Leger was a competition held from 1959 until the stadium closed.
|1959||Greenane Airlines||Imperial Airways – Take Astra||Jim Irving (Private)||39.94|
|1960||My Farewell||Demon King – Flirting Girl||Jack Tallantire (Powderhall)||41.16|
|1961||Desert Rambler||Champion Prince – Imperial Peg||Joe Booth (Private)||40.27|
|1962||Ballymurn Prince||Solar Prince – July Flower||Austin Hiscock (Belle Vue)||40.55|
|1963||Strelka||War Dance – Imperial Astra||Jim Irving (Private)||40.47|
|1964||Lucky Hi There||Hi There - Olives Bonny||Jimmy Jowett (Clapton)||39.28|
|1965||Feakles Wish||Feakles Luck – Oxgrove Dinkie||George Carrigill (Private)||40.95|
|1966||Caledonian Peg||Prairie Flash – Caledonian Penny||George Carrigill (Private)||40.63|
|1967||Negro Harpist||Oregon Prince - Imperial Astra||Jim Irving (Private)||40.42|
|1968||Forward King||Crazy Parachute – Supreme Witch||Ted Brennan (Sheffield)||39.94||11-10f|
|1969||Greenane Gem||Prairie Flash – Sheila At Last||Bessie Lewis (Private)||40.28||9-4|
|1970||Peace Blue Boy||Tric Trac – Peace Rose||Stan Mitchell (Belle Vue)||40.60||10-1|
|1971||Knock Off||Aristos – Last Pot||Harry Bamford (Belle Vue)||39.91||4-5f|
|1972||Ramdeen Stuart||Sallys Story – Any Streak||Norman Oliver (Brough Park)||40.19||1-2f|
|1973||Moylisha||Silver Hope – Last Pot||Harry Bamford (Belle Vue)||40.40||8-1|
|1974||Prince Wong||Supreme Fun – Irene Wong||Janet Tite (Private)||40.87||4-1|
|1975||Suffer On||Cobbler – No Tour||Rita Hayward (Norton Canes)||40.64||9-4|
|1976||Cooladine Game||Red Game – Flashy Minnie||Peter Harding (Powderhall)||40.84||6-1|
|1977||Paradise Spectre||Spectre – Paradise Wonder||Pat Mullins (Private)||40.20||1-3f|
|1978||Colums Corner||Blessington Boy – Kilnagleary Gift||John Gibbons (Rochester)||40.24||4-7f|
|1979||Luque||Itsachampion – Strawberry Pearl||Pete Beaumont (Leeds)||40.49||5-1|
|1980||Navigator||Super Jim – Pilgrims Blow||Pete Beaumont (Leeds)||40.69||20-1|
|1981||Rath Hero||Brother Orchid – Lady of Love||Gordon Bailey (Yarmouth)||40.70||20-1|
|1984||Willow Lass||Yellow Band – Brindle Betty||Stewart Loan (Shawfield)||40.41||10-1|
|1985||My Tootsie||Tough Decision – Jeffs Love||Stewart Loan (Shawfield)||40.54||5-1|
|1986||Shandon Tiger||Gambling Fever – Shandon Kitten||Bryce Wilson (Powderhall)||40.58||4-9f|
|1987||Clifton Hill||Ardralla Victory - Queensbury||Stewart Loan (Powderhall)||41.65||20-1|
|1990||Flicka Dubh||Ballylarkin Star – Idle Kate||Dave Hopper (Sheffield)||41.44||12-1|
|1991||Time For One||Green Gorse - Elevenses||Michael Power (Yarmouth)||40.33||11-4f|
|1992||Princeton Blue||Shanagarry Duke – Princeton House||Dave Conway (Private)||40.39||7-2|
|1993||Greenwell Kit||Lavally Oak – Cahills Gate||John Flaherty (Shawfield)||39.95 TR||4-6f|
|1994||Droopys Evelyn||Game Ball – Moral Support||Harry Williams (Sunderland)||39.90||6-1|
TR (Track record), 1954-1994 (700 yards, 650 metres), 1982-1983 (Not held)
Pre Metric recordEdit
|500||Pigalle Wonder||=27.97||30.04.1958||TV Trophy heats|
|700||Lucky Hi There||39.96||11.07.1964|
|700||Booked Six||39.84||03.07.1969||Scottish St Leger heats|
|260 H||Molly Munro||15.50||23.09.1933|
|500 H||Rich Cream||29.33||30.07.1938|
|500 H||Fodda Champion||28.87||07.05.1958|
|500 H||Rorys Pleasure||28.64||03.05.1961|
|700 H||Dawn Dancer||42.08||17.07.1961|
Post Metric recordsEdit
|465||Tory Mor||27.67||23.08.1975||Edinburgh Cup Final|
|650||Paradise Spectre||40.09||22.09.1977||Scottish St Leger heats|
|650||Greenwell Kit||39.95||27.03.1993||Scottish St Leger Final|
|824||Role of Fame||52.46+||19.10.1987|
|824||Easy Bimbo||51.43||05.10.1991||Scottish Marathon Final|
|465 H||Anns Chancer||28.96||19.07.1980|
|465 H||Cavan Town||28.68||02.05.1987||Scottish Grand National Final|
|465 H||Skyline Prince||28.63||06.05.1989|
|465 H||Kildare Slippy||28.29||1992|
+ track alterations
- Fotheringham, William (2006). Fotheringham's Extraordinary Sporting Pastimes. Robson Books Ltd. p. 87. ISBN 1-861059-53-1.
- Tarter, P Howard (1949). Greyhound Racing Encyclopedia. Fleet Publishing Company Ltd. p. 69.
- "OS County Series Edinburghshire 1931". old-maps.co.uk.
- Genders, Roy (1975). The Greyhound and Racing Greyhound. Page Brothers (Norwich). p. 97. ISBN 0-85020-0474.
- Genders, Roy (1981). The Encyclopedia of Greyhound Racing. Pelham Books Ltd. pp. 65–67. ISBN 07207-1106-1.
- Genders, Roy (1990). NGRC book of Greyhound Racing. Pelham Books Ltd. pp. 27–28. ISBN 0-7207-1804-X.
- "Remember When July". Greyhound Star.
- Barnes, Julia (1991). Daily Mirror Greyhound Fact File. Ringpress Books. pp. 84–86. ISBN 0-948955-61-9.
- "Remember When series (March 2020)". Greyhound Star.
- Fry, Paul (1995). The Official NGRC Greyhound Racing Yearbook. Ringpress Books. pp. 237–238. ISBN 186054-010-4.
- "Remember When - March". Greyhound Star.
- Scotland | National Rugby Ground (extract from SRU) | Inverleith: the first purpose-built international rugby ground, RugbyFootballHistory.com; Retrieved 7 November 2021
- Genders, Roy (1981). The Encyclopedia of Greyhound Racing. Pelham Books Ltd. p. 28. ISBN 07207-1106-1.
- Fry, Paul (1995). The Official NGRC Greyhound Racing Yearbook. Ringpress Books. pp. 112–114. ISBN 186054-010-4.
- Powderhall Stadium, pictures at Speedway Plus
- Powderhall Stadium, Defunct Speedway Tracks
- Powderhall Stadium, Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland
- A History of Powderhall, Powderhall Village Owners' Association