Britain’s bookies will mark this year’s Queen’s Jubilee in by donating all profits from the Britannia Stakes race at Royal Ascot to some of the UK’s top charities.
ABF – The Soldiers’ Charity, Sue Ryder, Ascot Racecourse Supports Community Fund, The Ivors Academy Trust and Cotswold Riding for the Disabled will all benefit from the Britannia Stakes, which takes place at Royal Ascot on June 16.
Betting and Gaming Council members Flutter (Paddy Power, Betfair, Sky Bet), bet365, Entain (Ladbrokes, Coral), William Hill, BetVictor, Kindred (Unibet), Betway, Rank Group (Grosvenor Sport), Virgin Bet, Tote, Fitzdares and Bet with Ascot have all signed up to the fundraising initiative.
They will hand over all profits they make from win and each-way bets, after levy and duties are deducted, on the big-field heritage handicap.
And if they do not make a profit on the race, the operators have agreed to make a donation to the charities.
It follows the success of last year’s Britannia Stakes fundraising drive, when £1.25 million was raised for a range of good causes.
The BGC hopes the initiative will help punters enjoy a race where, even if they lose, charities are guaranteed to win.
Michael Dugher, Chief Executive of the BGC, said: “I am absolutely delighted that the BGC’s largest members are once again raising vital funds at the Royal meeting for some of the country’s top charities, especially in this the year of the Queen’s Jubilee.
“Her Majesty’s passion for racing is known across the globe. It’s a sport that has the power to bring people together and Royal Ascot is one of the great highlights of the calendar. Millions of people enjoy a flutter and I’m proud that betting companies will donate their profits from one of Royal Ascot’s top races, the Britannia Stakes, to go towards some great charities. I am once again indebted to everyone at Royal Ascot for their continued support”.
Alastair Warwick, Managing Director, Ascot Racecourse, said: “We are delighted that Royal Ascot will once again play a part in raising valuable funds for these deserving charities.
“I know this fantastic initiative from the betting industry is hugely appreciated and the money will be used for some extremely worthwhile causes.”
Brigadier Peter Walker OBE, Chairman of ABF The Soldiers’ Charity for Berkshire, said: “ABF The Soldiers’ Charity would like to thank the members of the Betting and Gaming Council for their support last year and very kindly agreeing to make a donation again during Royal Ascot.
“We are the Army’s national charity and stand at the forefront of support for the Army family, last year supporting 60,000 people in 63 countries around the world. Our charity believes that all serving soldiers, veterans and their immediate families should have the opportunity to avoid hardship and enjoy independence and dignity.”
Caroline Graham, Director of Fundraising at Sue Ryder, said: “Sue Ryder is delighted to be chosen to be one of the charities that benefits from the Britannia Stakes at the Royal Ascot to celebrate the Queen’s Jubilee. Her Majesty has been Sue Ryder’s Patron since 1993, so it makes it even more special to be one of the charities involved this year.
“The money that is donated will go on to help us provide more care for more people through our palliative, neurological and bereavement support.”
Cliff Fluet, Chair of The Ivors Academy Trust, said: “We are thrilled that for the first time The Ivors Academy Trust will benefit from a donation through the Britannia Stakes race at Royal Ascot. The UK is a dynamic cultural powerhouse with a music industry to be proud of, yet younger songwriters and composers from disadvantaged backgrounds are finding it harder than ever to start and sustain a career in music.
“This donation will help fund our life-changing programmes that equip music creators with the skills, contacts and self-belief they need to succeed.”