Gottlieb Daimler patents the motor car.


Mar 14-15 - Flooding in city centre.

June 10 - Eruption of Mt Tarawera. The eruption lasted six hours and caused massive destruction. Several villages were destroyed, along with the famous silica hot springs known as the Pink and White Terraces. Around 120 people, mainly Maori, lost their lives

Oil is discovered in Taranaki.


Next week the good folk of Christchurch, and their near neighbours of the suburbs, will "give themselves up" to jollity. "Show Week" or " Race Week," as it is variously designated, according as the tastes of the designators are " sporting," or otherwise, has long been the most festive season of the year, and judging from present appearances the week in question will quite keep up it,s reputation in this year of grace, 1886. Festivities of all kinds, intended to suit all tastes, are in preparation, and will, on one day or another during the week, eventuate with as much eclat as the promoters can manage to evoke.

On Monday, the great agricultural gathering of the Province, the Metropolitan Show, will make a beginning. The day, however, will be devoted mainly to the "Implement" classes, and will, therefore, be more one of business than of pleasure, so far as the Show is concerned. A more pleasureable gathering for the general public will be the Trotting meeting on Lancaster Park, which should attract a goodly number of the devotees of a sport which may, perhaps, some day attain the importance here which it has in America.

After leaving the Show Grounds or Lancaster Park the visitor may turn his steps either to the Theatre Royal or the Oddfellows' Hall, Lichfield street. At the former he will have the excitement of seeing a good play, of a proper sensational type, in the form of "His Natural Life," while should he prefer the Hall, he may listen to the capital variety concert to be given in aid of the Addington Workshops' Band. The Theatre, it may be noted, will be a standing attraction throughout the week.

On Tuesday the sportsmen will open the ball. The C.J.C. Metropolitan meeting will draw some thousands of "all sorts and conditions" of men to the Racecourse, to see the struggle for the N.Z. Cup. On the Agricultural Show grounds, the day will be one of hard work, for the bulk of the classes will have to be judged. A gathering of quite another sort, though equally attractive to many good people, will be the bazaar to be opened in Warner's Assembly Rooms on behalf of the funds of St John's Church.

Wednesday will, however, be the "great day" of the week, for it is to be "Show Day" par excellence. The attractions of the Agricultural Show itself will be enhanced by those of a flower show, under the auspices of the Christchurch Horticultural Society, and of an exhibition of poultry under the direction of the Sydenham Poultry Society. Both these exhibitions are to be held in marquees on the Show Ground. At Lancaster Park, a lawn tennis tournament will be held. The bazaar at Warner's Booms will be continued, and the pleasure seeker can finish up in the evening either at the theatre or at the very excellent concert to be given in the Oddfellows' Hall by the Irish Rifle Volunteers.

On Thursday, the Derby and several minor events will be run at Riccarton, and the Christchurch Bicycle Club will have a day's outing at Lancaster Park. On Friday the contest for the Canterbury Cup will, it is to be hoped, draw another large crowd to the racecourse, and with the final day of the C.J.C. Metropolitan meeting, the carnival week may fairly be considered to end.

Credit: Star 6 November 1886


A trotting match for £5 a side took place at Ashley yesterday morning between Mr F. Croft's Skipper and Mr Booker's Jack. The course was from Sefton to Ashley, a distance of about four miles. Jack took the lead from the first, and won by nearly a quarter of a mile.

Credit: Star 21 Sep 1886


In 1886-7 there were four meetings and the following season Plumpton Park reverted to five meetings. At the February and April meetings the Club ran two trots on the programme instead of the customary one.

Credit: CPTC: Centennial History


A newspaper report of 16th April, 1886 stated that several leading sportsmen, Mr H P Lance prominent amongst them, agreed to band together to conduct Trotting Meetings at Lancaster Park in an endeavour to finance their new ground, that is Lancaster Park, for cricket. The locality was handy to town and supplied an attraction for sporting men who were at a loss on Saturday afternoons. The first Meeting was advertised to be held on Saturday 15th May, 1886 and the programme contained five races, three in saddle and two in harness, with added stakes totaling 125 sovereigns. A journalist, who inspected the grounds and facilities stated “a good course has been staked off round the grass, and with a little alteration in the fencing to the west of the grandstand a tolerably commodious saddling paddock will be adequate for the comfort of officials, jockeys, etc and altogether the facilities for the comfort of visitors will be up to the average.”

The track was a third of a mile in length or under three furlongs (600 Metres).

The inaugural meeting was not held on the day set down as there were two postponements. The first postponement was due to heavy floods in Christchurch, the Avon River having risen four feet and Ferry Road, near Lancaster Park, being one sheet of water. The second postponement was due to the death of Mr H P Lance who was a devotee of racing, one of the founders and a Steward of Lancaster Park Trotting Club. The Meeting was finally held on Saturday 29th May, 1886 when there was an attendance of over 1,100 and reports state that the arrangements made for the Meeting were excellent. £38 was taken at the gate. £1,512 was invested on the Totalisator run by Hobbs & Goodwin. The advertised Officers of the Club for the first Meeting were: Judge, Mr H P Lance, but he was replaced following his death by Mr Justice Johnson; Starter, C A Calvert; Clerk of the Course, A M Ollivier; Handicapper, B J Hale; Secretary, C J Penfold; and the Stewards, Dr H H Prins, F Cotton, J B Gresson, F Jones, H P Lance, A E G Rhodes, A Cracroft-Wilson and C H Williams.

The principal event was the Lancaster Park Time Trot of three miles in saddle. The first prize was 40 sovereigns and the result was:

1st: B Edwards “Fidget” 50 seconds Rider: Owner

2nd: D O’Brien’s “Erin” 45 second Rider: Owner

3rd: P Howard’s “Malvena” 50 seconds Rider: A J Keith

Time was 9 minutes and the dividend paid on the Totalisator was £12/3/-. The Addington Workshops Band provided a musical programme.

The Lancaster Park Trotting Club conducted seven Meetings in its first season between 29th May 1886 and 27th June 1887.

Credit: NZMTC: Historical Notes compiled by D C Parker



After two postponements the inaugural meeting was finally held on Saturday 29th May, 1886. For the first meeting, on a course three laps to the mile, five races - one at three miles and four at two miles - were held before an attendance of 1100. The tote handled £1,512 ($3024)while total prize money was £125 ($250). The main event of the day was won by Fidget, ridden by Bert Edwards from Dan O'Brien's Erin in a time of nine minutes for the three mile journey.

The Lancaster Park Trotting Club conducted seven Meetings in its first season between 29th May 1886 and 27th June 1887. This Club was formed to help boost the finances of the Lancaster Park Cricket & Athletic Sports Company which was formed in 1880 and wanted to acquire Lancaster Park.


In the event that you cannot find the information you require from the contents, please contact the Racing Department at Addington Raceway.
Phone (03) 338 9094