Kempton Racecourse is a globally recognised horse racing facility and a fully licensed conference and entertainment venue that is located in Sunbury-on-Thames in Surrey. The racecourse is located in the south-western of Charing Cross, bordering Greater London. One of the oldest horse riding spots in the United Kingdom and the whole of Europe, the racecourse has held thousands of notable events starting from 1878.
The racing grounds stand on about 210 acres consisting of flat grassland encircled by woodland, with two lakes positioned in the centre. The gates to the racecourse are adjacent to the Kempton Park railway station which was created to help racegoers access the sporting grounds on a branch path from London Waterloo through Clapham Junction. It is one of the very few racing sites that are well-connected to public transport infrastructure.
The equestrian sporting facility features both inner and outer coursing used for National Hunt and Flat races. One of the most important races held at the racecourse includes the King George VI Chase, which takes place at Kempton on Boxing Day. Another notable occasion at the horse riding arena also hosts a Grade 1 National Hunt chase that involves horses that are aged four years and above. These two occasions attract thousands of racing enthusiasts from Kempton and Surrey as well as from far-off neighbourhoods.
The racecourse was started out of an idea conceived by a 19th-century investor named S.H. Hyde. The racecourse was, just like many other extraordinary ideas that have tremendously changed the world, thought of as Hyde savoured his favourite pastime of touring the countryside. The businessman was having a carriage cruise around Britain when he stumbled on Kempton Manor and Park which had been advertised for sale. Leasing the grounds in 1872, the savvy investor undertook a costly construction project on the grounds which, in 1878, birthed the now popular Kempton Racecourse.
Although the racecourse closed temporarily between 2005 and 2006, it reopened with an all-weather Polytrack major track and floodlighting installations to make all-night occasions possible. Presently, Kempton is one of the most well-designed racecourses in the whole of the United Kingdom.
In addition to the horse racing, Kempton also hosts a weekly market that takes place on Thursdays and an antique market on every last Tuesday of the month. Further, the sporting grounds hold the seasonal wedding and pre-wedding fairs from time to time. Due to this reason, the venue has two reception desks and two restaurant dining and accommodation facilities that can be hired for any private gatherings and individual hospitality services. There are also a couple of exquisite boxes that may be used for private purposes on racing days and for personally organised meetings.
The upper tiers of the grandstand and boxes provide an uninterrupted view of the racecourse. Further, the site has a purpose-built railway station that is situated on the London Waterloo toward Shepperton line. The railway's transportation services enable guests and international visitors to access the facility with remarkable ease.
For racegoers who are not journeying to the venue through the capital, the junction railway services on this short line are at Clapham.