Royal Ascot 2020 proved the catalyst for £400,000 in fundraising activities, the racecourse has announced.
With the showpiece Flat meeting taking place behind closed doors for the first time because of the coronavirus pandemic, the ‘Royal Ascot At Home’ initiative was introduced.
The #StyledWithThanks campaign saw thousands of fans around the world dress up and share their photos on social media – with prizes awarded to the Most Elegant, Most Uplifting and Most Original entries as judged by a panel of fashion industry experts.
The #StyledWithThanks programme contributed £166,000 in fundraising, benefiting The National Emergencies Trust Relief Fund, NHS Charities Together, The Care Workers Charity and the Berkshire Community Foundation Coronavirus Fund.
Photos posted will be turned into a giant rainbow mosaic image tribute, which will become a permanent installation at Ascot.
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.
Funds were also raised by sales of 2020 Ascot Jockey Bears, a £5 donation from the sale of all Royal Ascot Afternoon Teas and 10 per cent 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.
Nick Smith, director of racing & public affairs at Ascot, said: “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.”