Royal Ascot racegoers will have spotted soldiers, sailors, marines, airmen and airwomen in full dress uniform amidst the top hats and fascinators. This is because the Trustees of Ascot Racecourse Limited invited military personnel for the seventh consecutive year as part of their Armed Forces Day celebrations on Friday 21 June 2019.
Ascot Racecourse provides special Royal Ascot ticket offers for military personnel and their families, and each year members of the Armed Forces also act as volunteers by coordinating bucket collections for their three principal charities – the Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity, ABF The Soldiers' Charity and the Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund.
In the last six years alone at Ascot, more than £150,000 has been raised for the threw charities. This includes generous donations from racegoers and corporate support from Ascot Racecourse itself.
On Friday more than 80 serving personnel came together to collect on behalf of the three military charities – raising £22,000 in just a few short hours.
The charities support military personnel, past and present, and their families in their times of need with a wide range of practical, emotional, and financial support.
Wing Commander Neil Tomlin, Area Director at the RAF Benevolent Fund, said: "The Friday of Royal Ascot has once again been a hugely successful day.
"Each charity taking part works tirelessly to support the entire military family, as well as their partners and dependants, but we would not be able to provide this level of care without the public's support.
"We cannot begin to express our thanks for the generosity we saw from Friday’s racegoers who helped us raise much-needed funds all while enjoying a fun day out."
Ashley Morton-Hunte, Corporate and Racing Communications Manager at Ascot, said: "We are delighted to be able to give something back to these three fantastic Armed Forces charities who do so much positive work for those in need.
"Year on year it is wonderful to see racegoers give so generously to the charities and we look forward to welcoming military personnel again in the future.
"We hope that the military personnel who attend enjoy their time at Royal Ascot."