Royal Ascot 2020 proved the catalyst for £400,000 in fundraising activities with the racecourse’s own #StyledWithThanks programme contributing £166,000.
The racecourse’s direct fundraising benefitted: The National Emergencies Trust Coronavirus Appeal, NHS Charities Together, The Care Workers Charity and the Berkshire Community Foundation Coronavirus Fund.
In partnership with the British Hat Guild and the wider millinery and fashion worlds, an online auction of rainbow-themed hats generated £24,000 and the campaign was given a £30,000 boost when Royal Ascot Champion Jockey 2020, Frankie Dettori, signed and donated his commemorative ‘70th Royal Ascot win’ saddlecloth to the auction.
The campaign saw over 5,000 entries across the 3 adult categories with 100+ children’s entries with fans dressing up and sharing their photo on social media with prizes being awarded to the Most Elegant, Most Uplifting and Most Original entries as judged by a panel of fashion industry experts. All photos received will be turned into a giant rainbow mosaic image tribute which will become a permanent installation at Ascot Racecourse.
Funds were also raised by sales of 2020 Ascot Jockey Bears, a £5 donation from the sale of all Royal Ascot Afternoon Teas sold and 10% of sales from the new Ascot Wine Club.
Supplementing the #StyledWithThanks campaign, Betting and Gaming Council members – many of the country’s leading bookmakers – generously pledged £250,000 to be distributed between Prostate Cancer UK, Marie Curie, The Care Workers Charity and the Berkshire Community Foundation Coronavirus Fund around an initiative that centred on the Britannia Stakes on Gold Cup Day.
The jockeys riding on the final day of Royal Ascot also donated all their riding fees.
Other initiatives run throughout the week included a “Nominate a Call” campaign which encouraged fans to nominate someone to receive a call from a racing personality. Over 500 applications were received within 48 hours and 20 people were called by either James Doyle, Brough Scott, Alex Hammond, Hollie Doyle, Jamie Spencer, Mick Fitzgerald or Nick Luck.
Nick Smith, Director of Racing & Public Affairs, Ascot Racecourse, commented on this year’s initiatives:
“We are delighted with the response of the public and the racing, betting and fashion industries to all the charitable initiatives that took place during and around Royal Ascot.
“The rainbow montage tribute of photos sent in as part of our #StyledWithThanks campaign will be a permanent reminder of the year when all elements of what makes Royal Ascot so special came together to support a range of national and local charities.”