Pontefract Racecourse, Pontefract, West Yorkshire, WF8 4QD, UK
Pontefract Racecourse is probably our favourite flying site.
It is easily accessible straight off the M62, has free parking, gates that stay open all day, every day and has a huge open expense of well cared for open park in the middle of the course.
The race track itself is a full circuit of 2.5 miles, making it one of the longest continuous flat racing circuits in Europe. This gives you an idea of how much open land there is in the middle.
On any day of the week you will see model RC planes being flown by the local club, anglers at the lake, dog walkers (and on the whole the dogs and their owners are very well behaved and respectful of other users of the park), a small number of power kiter’s zooming about, families enjoying picnics, ice cream vans and Sunday league football matches going on.
But you can always find a large quiet area to set up camp and fly kites in.
It is always worth checking on Pontefract Racecourses website when their racing is on, in order to prevent a wasted journey, but the racedays are well spread out and often tend to be on a weekday or early evening.
We tend to fly at Pontefract when the wind is predicted as being around 10mph+ – it is not as high up as our other venues and can be troublesome when the wind is low. Although the area is open enough that you can fly whatever direction the wind is coming from it can be ‘bumpy’ if blowing from the south-west due to the wind being disturbed by the grandstand.
If it is coming in from the North then you can predict a superb days flying.