A collection of letters written by Fred Astaire, sent to Jack Leach

Fred Astaire (1899-1987) is considered to be one of the greatest dancers in film history. Many of the films he starred in, including Top Hat, Holiday Inn and Easter Parade, had a huge cultural impact on dance and the film industry. Like many Hollywood stars of the 1920s, Fred Astaire had a keen passion for horseracing. In his spare time he loved to visit the races in America, the United Kingdom and Australia, eventually owning horses himself.

John Edward Leach, better known as Jack, was a jockey, trainer and writer based in Newmarket. Jack trained Fred’s horses that he owned in the UK.

The exhibition of personal letters date between 1927 and 1969 and express over 40 years of friendship.

The National Horseracing Museum would like to thank Jack Leach's grandson, Andrew Gosling, for kindly loaning the collection of letters to the museum.

Funded by the Suffolk County Council's COVID Fund for Culture.

Trigger Warnings: Please be aware these letters contain strong language, which can be of an adult nature. Viewer discretion is advised. Topics: offensive language, outdated cultural depictions, gambling.