Victorian London - Publications - History - The Queen's London : a Pictorial and Descriptive Record of the Streets, Buildings, Parks and Scenery of the Great Metropolis, 1896 - Derby Day at Epsom

Derby Day at Epsom - photograph


Once seen, Epsom Race-Course on a Derby Day is not likely to be forgotten. It is the great Saturnalia of Londoners, frequented by thousands, fashionable and unfashionable, who care nothing for horse-racing. The Derby is the classic race of the year, and to win it is to secure the Blue Riband of the Turf. It was instituted by the Earl of Derby in 1780, and is run at the Epsom Summer Meeting, which takes place about Whitsuntide, when also the Oaks, called after the Earl's hunting-box, is decided. Our view shows the Grand Stand-the largest in the world-on the farther side of the course, and is taken from the rising ground, which is always occupied by drags and other vehicles, whose occupants can see over the crowd lining the course.