Newbury Racecourse station was opened in 1905 to serve the famous local racecourse. Originally it was only used on race days, but nowadays it also provides commuter services to the East Fields area of the town, with regular local services to and from Reading and Newbury town centre. During race meetings extra trains, including intercity services, can call at the station. These tend to call at an extra platform, with direct access to the racecourse.
Beyond the racecourse, the station is well located for a number of businesses north of the railway tracks, along Hambridge Road and the surrounding streets. Newbury town centre is about a mile away - or one stop on the train - and has plenty of local and big-name shops around Market Street and the Kennet Shopping Centre. To the south of town is the former Greenham Common air base, much of which has been returned to heathland following the end of the Cold War.