British Racecourses out in force to support record-breaking Racing Together Community Day

Paul Swainin Association News
  • The RCA and 26 racecourses/representative bodies have so far committed to Racing Together Community Day.
  • Racing Together Community Day is racing's annual, national day of volunteering, now in its fifth year.
  • Over 75 racing employee teams from across the sport have so far participated.
  • Over 40 charities were supported as teams nationwide gave 700 hours to support local causes and community groups.

The RCA and 26 of its member racecourses/representative bodies have so far participated in Racing Together Community Day, the sport's annual day of volunteering.

On 25th May, a range of community-based volunteering took place with racecourse teams out in force to support their localities. This was part of the sport's collective effort in which over 75 teams from across British racing volunteers over 700 hours for over 40 charities, making this a record year for Racing Together Community Day.

This year's Racing Together Community Day, the fifth to date, was also a contributor to the Big Help Out as part of the King Charles III Coronation.

The RCA team supported Ascot Racecourse with its volunteering drive by welcoming a number of local day-care elderly residents to the Berkshire track for a stunning afternoon tea before hosting a meet and greet with Ascot's equine ambassador Side Glance, the former racehorse trained by Andrew Balding.

Racecourse teams across the country participated in the event either before or on 25th May with more to be confirmed later in the year. Activities undertaken to date include: improving the community gardens at Jack Berry House (Go Racing In Yorkshire), grounds maintenance at Ayr Cancer Support (Ayr), hosting the Racing Welfare Remembrance Raceday (Catterick), hosting a free raceday for community carers (Chelmsford City), community litter picking (Fakenham, Ludlow and York), garden and grounds maintenance at Douglas Nursing Home (Hamilton Park), a clothing donation bank (Hexham), supporting Wimbledon greyhound welfare (Kempton Park), supporting the East Lothian Food Bank (Musselburgh), supporting the Injured Jockeys Fund (Redcar, Ripon and Thirsk), supporting local Riding for the Disabled (Salisbury), hosting a riding clothes bank for local riding centres (Scottish Racing) plus a number of other activities to be confirmed at a later date.

Paul Swain, Raceday Experience & Communications Manager at the RCA, said: "This year's Racing Together Community Day set new ground with a record number of hours donated to our local communities. It was wonderful to be involved and to see so many colleagues from racecourses and the wider sport undertake activities important to them and their neighbours.

"Feedback from beneficiaries and racecourse teams alike has been universally positive. The impact and benefits of volunteering are clear to see with community links forged and strengthened across the country."

John Blake, Chief Executive of Racing Together said: "The 2023 Community Day has been the biggest yet with employee groups needing no more than a reminder of the date before they

swung into action. The enthusiasm and creativity shown by a range of teams has made a real impact on local causes and the communities around racing hubs. It's no surprise that food banks have been a focus for many given the current crisis and racing's efforts will have a direct and immediate benefit to families needing help nationwide.

"Community Day is now well established within the calendar but is only a snapshot of the work that racing people do year-round on a voluntary basis, of which the industry should be very proud. We would like to thank the many teams who played a part in the day and the Horserace Betting Levy Board for supporting our work."

A library of images from Racing Together Community Day can be downloaded here.