The Prince’s Stand Recognised For Suffragette Action

41 places across England that were at the centre of suffragette action, from mass meetings and smashed windows to prison hunger strikes and post box fires, have been officially recognised by Historic England for their links to the suffragette movement including meeting halls, post boxes and prisons.

The sites, crucial to the campaign to get women the vote where protests were held, direct action carried out or strategies plotted, have been updated on the National Heritage List. They include  The Prince’s Stand at Epsom Downs Racecourse. The only remaining building at the racecourse from the time of Emily’s visit on that fateful day Wednesday 4th June 1913.

The Prince’s Stand was erected in 1879, when the original Regency stand, built c1784, was altered and enlarged. Used by the Prince of Wales, later King George IV, it housed the royal party celebrations when the Prince won the Derby with Sir Thomas in 1788. Up until 1829, it was the only permanent building on the Downs, although by 1831, when the Princess Victoria visited Epsom, it was struggling to keep the royal entourage comfortably ensconced.

In 1940, soon after the outbreak of war, racing at Epsom was abandoned for the duration and given over to the military; the Prince’s Stand was then commandeered as the Officers Mess. In 1979, as part of the celebrations for Derby 200, the Prince’s Stand was extensively refurbished. It is still used on race days as a special area for  Owners & Trainers only.

The Prince’s Stand Epsom Downs

 

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