Godalming - Recreation Ground

Busbridge Lane - Holloway Hill : GU7 1QD Godalming - Recreation Ground : Map credit National Library of Scotland Godalming - Recreation Ground : Image credit Godalming Museum
The Godalming Recreation Club was set up in the early 1880's as a multi-sports club. In 1883, the club had managed to acquire 13 acres of land at Busbridge estate and we're busy sowing a grass area for cricket and laying a cycle track. Although they had their own ground, the Godalming Annual Athletics Sports were still held at Broadwater for the next 20 years. The Recreation Club ground would eventually become Godalming Recreation Ground.

The Southern Cyclist Camp was held at Busbridge Park on August Bank Holiday 1888 with racing taking place on the recreation ground. The committee gave notice that "If there is the slightest sign of any Wild West foolery, the offenders will be promptly chucked."

The Southern Counties held their sixth race meeting on August 5th 1889, the track was described as heavy and there was a stiff wind. The meeting was at a time when ordinary bicycles were still raced, so the events included safety, ordinary, mixed safety and ordinary bicycles and tricycle races.

The Godalming Recreation Club held cycle race meetings on the Recreation ground through the early 1900's. The track was described as 2½ laps to the mile. The cycle races were usually a one lap scratch race and 1, 3 and 5 miles handicap races. The meetings were held on Whit Mondays.

Guildford Wheelers held a Wednesday track meeting on August 26th 1903 as their usual venue at Guildford Sports ground was not available.

The Godalming Recreation Club continued to hold bicycle race meetings on the Recreation Ground until 1906.

The Recreation Ground is still in use and is known as Holloway Hill Recreation Ground. It is protected by ‘Fields in Trust' as a green space for perpetuity. It is the home of Godalming cricket club. There are two football and cricket pitches and four public tennis courts.


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Photos : Godalming Museum
Maps    : National Library of Scotland