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Stable staff - Jackdaws Castle (Jonjo O'Neill) - Oct 07 - Edward Whitaker

Members of racing's workforce donate 6,000 hours to charitable activity

  PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (  

Racing launches  communities initiative

A NEW project, which it is hoped will help cement racing's place at the heart of communities across Britain, was unveiled on Tuesday night in the Houses of Parliament.

The Racing Together scheme was launched at a parliamentary reception organised by the racing industry, with speakers including sports minister Helen Grant and her Labour shadow Clive Efford.

It was claimed British racing invests £6.6 million a year in community engagement activities, while members of its 22,000-strong workforce donate 6,000 hours of their time each year towards charitable activity. The aim of the project is to bring that all under one banner.

Those behind the programme said it had four main pillars - looking after the people and horses involved in British racing, education outreach, helping those most in need and bringing together the communities in which racing operates.

Racecourse Association chairman Ian Barlow said: "British racing has a proud track record of helping communities across the country. The establishment of Racing Together will enable us to work together to do even more to support those most in need and work with the communities in which we operate."

A community engagement strategy was one of the ‘enablers' contained within racing's wider industry strategy, with the aim of delivering increased political and public support for the sport as well as improving recruitment and linking to participant welfare and customer growth.

BHA chairman Steve Harman said: "Racing is a British success story enjoyed by millions of people every year and is a significant industry for the rural economy and driver of international investment in UK PLC.

"It succeeds because of the contribution of our workforce, racecourses, education providers and charities, which bring benefits to communities across Britain. Racing Together is our opportunity to give back even more to the communities which support the industry."

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