23.03.10 - THE GRAND NATIONAL
Long Lost Photo Develops Into Grand Natonal Exhibition
A forgotten photograph of Red Rum being led down a Southport street after his first Grand National win in 1973 has sparked the launch of a new exhibition.
The People’s Grand National photographic exhibition, which features historic images from the Liverpool Daily Post and Echo dating back to 1923, will go on show on Liverpool Day at Aintree Racecourse on Thursday April 8th.
The idea for the exhibition came about after a chance sighting of a historic picture of Red Rum by Aintree Racecourse’s Marketing Manager Emma Owen.
The iconic photograph sees a huge crowd gathering to see Aintree legend Red Rum receive a police escort whilst being led out of his horsebox in Upper Aughton Road, Birkdale after his win.
She said: “I happened to see a photograph of Red Rum in Southport surrounding by a cheering crowd of people. I knew the street was very near to where my mother and her sisters grew up.
“I happened to show it to my mother and her sister and to our amazement there were members of our family actually on the photo and my aunty could remember it being taken.
“We got talking and realised there must be other families out there with similar experiences, photographs and memories of the Grand National to share.”
Emma’s aunt Jean Colclough, from Birkdale, whose younger sister Alison, Grandmother Betsy and father William all appear in the photo, said: “There were always a lot of people gathering round in the streets to welcome Red Rum home. It was like a real celebration and the pub on the corner must have done a roaring trade as the parties used to go on till all hours.
“Everyone felt as if he was one of their own and, of course, he must have made a few people a pretty penny over the years. I always used to put a bet on him as you could see the amount of work that went into his training that he was a horse of real pedigree.
“He used to walk past the front gate of our house almost every day on his way down to the beach and his trainer Ginger McCain was always really affable to anyone whenever they asked about how he was getting on leading up to the big race.”
Aintree officials are now appealing for people to get in touch if they spot themselves or relatives on one of the 50 photographs featured in the exhibition.
A sneak preview of the photographs will be on show at the Liverpool Daily Post & Echo building, in Old Hall Street, from Monday 29th March until Wednesday April 7th when it will transfer to the racecourse for Liverpool Day.