When horses raced on the frozen River Ouse

7:40am Tuesday 5th February 2013

ONE of the most remarkable horse races ever held in York will be discussed tonight at a meeting of local historians.

Members of the Bishophill History Group will hear about the events of 1607, when horses raced on the frozen River Ouse.

The event is recorded in the History and Gazetteer of York by Edward Baines, published in 1823.

Baines wrote: “In 1607, there was a frost of such severity and continuance that the Ouse became almost a solid body of ice and a horse race was run on the river from the Tower at the end of Marygate, under the great arch of the bridge, to the crane at Skeldergate postern.”

The history group meets in the Golden Ball pub on the first Tuesday of every month and will tonight be discussing Baines’s work.

Other notable events he recorded include the discovery in 1802 of 100 silver William the Conqueror pennies, while workmen were digging foundations for the new jail, and severe flooding in Skeldergate and North Street in 1614.

There are also references to river trading between York and London, coaches travelling from the Elephant and Castle pub in Skeldergate, the construction of local schools, a list of local societies from previous centuries, and a list of local residents.

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