Community Engagement

Chelmsford City Racecourse plays an active role within both the racing and local community. With an average of 55 racedays per year we provide regular opportunities for owners and trainers to race their horses all year round. We also continue to build links with the local community by staging local events and activities throughout the year.

Chelmsford City Racecourse is one of a total of 60 racecourses in Britain, and is an active member of the racing community. We work closely with the British Horseracing Authority to help promote quality racing and attract new audiences. We actively support the British Horseracing Education and Standards Trust (BHEST) which helps introduce racing to schools through tailored activity days and educational support packs.

HORSE WELFARE – THE HORSE COME FIRST

The safety and welfare of horses and jockeys is paramount throughout the year at Chelmsford City Racecourse and nowhere is this better demonstrated than in the changes made to the racing surface itself during the redevelopment in 2015.

The key elements of the project were to rewax the current surface to a higher standard, minimising kickback and to add a 7-furlong chute. There was also works to remove the pedestrian crossing over the track, replacing it with an underpass directly from the ticket office onto the concourse. These works have created a safer race track for the horses, and also a safer course for racegoers.

Three specifically qualified equine vets are on duty every race day at Chelmsford, dedicated to the welfare of all the horses. During each race, vets follow the runners by car and can respond to and attend a casualty generally within a minute – as fast as the paramedic teams responsible for human casualties.

There are two equine ambulances on course at all times and three ambulances for any incidents involving injuries to jockeys.

Chelmsford’s two permanent veterinary boxes are supplemented with an X-Ray machine for the major meetings to assist with swift diagnosis before administration of treatment on site or any movement necessary to equine hospitals.

The jockeys’ facilities at Chelmsford City Racecourse include a medical treatment room, rest rooms and a dedicated physiotherapist during our peak season.

Chelmsford City Racecourse are proud to support The Horse Comes First, a campaign run by leading organisations in British Horseracing to raise awareness of the high standards of equine welfare in the sport. The Horse Comes First aims to improve the understanding of the care given to our horses throughout and after their careers in racing.

British Racing is among the world’s best regulated animal activities. The British Horseracing Authority (BHA) is the Government recognised body responsible for the regulation of horseracing. Together with the RSPCA and World Horse Welfare, it is a leading signatory of the National Equine Welfare Protocol.

British Racing’s own self-imposed and enforced welfare standards far exceed existing national animal welfare legislation and among a population estimated to be around 1 million, racehorses in Britain are among the healthiest and best looked after 2% of horses in the country.

The sport employs over 6,000 people to provide first class care and attention for the 14,000 horses in training and British Racing is committed to providing the best possible standards of veterinary care for its horses and has invested, via the Levy Board, over £32 million since 2000 in Veterinary Research and Education.

CHARITIES

Chelmsford City Racecourse is proud to support selected local charities and activities, in addition to racing charities, throughout the year.

Over 200 local charities, community groups and businesses benefit each year either through monetary contributions or through complimentary tickets for use as raffle and auction prizes.

Beneficiaries in 2015 included: Tickets for Troops and Great and Little Leighs Women’s Institute.

Last year, over £2000 was raised for charity across charity race days and bucket collections here at the racecourse.

Chelmsford City Racecourse is also engaged with the British Horseracing Authority-led Racing Together initiative, which seeks to give something back to the communities in which it operates around the country. British Racing invests £6.6 million a year in community engagement activities, while members of the 22,000 strong workforce donate 6,000 hours of their time each year for charitable activity.

We are very proud to have supported Richard Farquhar over the last 12 months on his mission to walk 3,000 miles between all UK racecourses to raise vital funds for Pancreatic Cancer UK and Racing Welfare, as part of the Walking for Courses initiative.

Give and Gain Day 2016 – the global day of employee volunteering organised by Business in the Community (BITC). Now in its ninth year, thousands of people from hundreds of companies will take part in the volunteering day on Friday 20 May 2016. It is Britain’s only nationally organised day of volunteering.

Racing’s contribution to the day has been co-ordinated by Racing Together, the community engagement strategy for the sport. Chelmsford City Racecourse are proud to support Give and Gain Day and in 2016 teams from the racecourse volunteered with local hospice Little Havens.

Fraser Garrity, Racecourse Manager at Chelmsford City, said:

“It’s a fantastic opportunity for us to put something back into our community. We understand the importance of community engagement and are huge supporters of the Racing Together initiative.

“We will not only make a difference in helping to maintain a lovely environment for those that Little Havens care for, but our staff will also gain insight about the fantastic work Little Havens Hospice does.”

For further information on our charitable activities or to request an application to be considered for funding, please contact the racecourse.

SCHOOLS AND EDUCATION

Chelmsford City Racecourse welcomes children to the races, especially at dedicated family racedays, and supports a number of local schools with their fundraising activities throughout the year with donations of complimentary tickets as raffle and auction prizes throughout the year.

The British Horseracing Education and Standards Trust (BHEST) is a charity which supports young people’s learning and development with the aim of encouraging an interest in horseracing both as a leisure activity and as a future career path.

“Racing to School” is BHEST’s flagship education programme, providing out of the classroom learning opportunities at racecourses, studs and training yards across the country, for over 10,000 young people every year. Many local schoolchildren benefit from access to this programme at Chelmsford City Racecourse every year.