eNL sponsor the Handicap Stakes race at Chester Racecourse on Friday 8th July – for what turned out to be an outstanding evening for gents and ladies alike, in association with the Spinal Injuries Charity.
Melanie Daly and Penny Trottman from eNL invited several Partners from leading law firms to join them for a champagne reception and four course meal. It was a fun packed and entertaining evening, with proceeds going to the Spinal Injuries Charity.
Chester Racecourse, the oldest racecourse in Britain, is still revealing more of its history as archaeologists, sponsored by the race company, unearths more evidence of times past.
In Roman times, the racecourse lay underneath water as a tidal pool of the River Dee. Part of a sandstone Roman quay wall survives below the medieval city walls and wooden jetties and wharves on the site would have seen trading ships from across the Roman Empire bringing cargoes of wine, spices and pottery to Chester.
Chester was a major maritime port in the medieval period, and in the 13th century, Water Gate served as the main harbour. However, increased sitting, combined with a falling sea level, led to the creation of the racecourse on land known as the Roodee – the name derived from ‘rood’ (the Saxon word for cross) and ‘eye’ (the Norman word for island). Roodee therefore means ‘island of the cross’ – part of a sandstone cross stands within the racecourse.
The racecourse has been the venue for many exciting events – in 1441, rival gaolers from the Castle and Northgate gathered here for a massive fist fight and horse racing was introduced to replace the Goteddsday (Shrove Tuesday) football match, which was banned for being too violent.