THE history of the Roodee from the Roman harbour to horseracing will be explained in a new interpretative hub if given the green light.
Plans have been submitted for a canopy-covered plinth overlooking the racecourse, accessed from Nuns Road, featuring special binoculars, interpretation panels and benches.
The application is by Chester Renaissance as part of European-funded project PORTICO which aims to make the City Walls walk one of the best urban heritage trails in Europe.
The Roodee and Roman Quay wall are key features of interest but the existing presentation to visitors is said to be poor.
Sea-going ships used to sail up the River Dee estuary to Chester to a harbour located where the racecourse is today.
But the Roodee silted up over time and has been used for horse racing since 1539. Latest thinking suggests the so-called Roman Quay wall, which can be seen below Nuns Road, may be just a Roman defensive structure.
A document supporting the application states: “The site analysis and consultation process established the need for seating and shelter on the walls and to provide much needed space to assemble for guided tours and classroom groups.
“The opportunity to enjoy the vista across the racecourse and tell the story of The Roodee, The Roman Quay wall and the port was the real asset of this location.
“Combining the needs of the Racecourse to improve operational access on race days whilst creating an important interpretation hub at this key marker point on the walls walk generated the proposed use of the site.
“The panoramic views at this point will be further enhanced by installing interpretative binoculars that when purchased, play films of Roman Galleons sailing in the former port and the first horse race in 1539.”