Becky’s Blog: An exciting October at Cheltenham Racecourse

Over 600 people arrived to watch the Rugby World Cup Final in The Centaur – it was a great atmosphere, even though it wasn’t the result that England were hoping for, South Africa were very deserving winners.

This was the first time, we had opened The Centaur to broadcast a sports final and it is something we certainly will do again. It was great to see so many young supporters getting involved and to showcase our spectacular screen to all the guests.

To get the behind our English Roses and show the support, The Cheltenham Face painters joined the fun painting a number of flags and roses of the cheeks of many fans.

The Rugby World Cup Final topped off a busy time at Cheltenham Racecourse for our events team with the 19/20 racing season kicking off as well.

The benefit of a versatile sporting venues, is that we can often host two events on the same day and this was the case for Saturday 2nd November. The outdoor space hosted the Cheltenham Round Table Fireworks Display 2019 and this is widely recognized as one of the largest and safest firework displays in the South West region, attracting around 10,000 people every year.

Early October saw the launch of former Prime Minster David Cameron autobiography as part of The Times and The Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival.  Over 2000 people enjoyed the interview on The Centaur stage, carried out by BBC’s journalist and broadcaster, Sophie Raworth.

The Gloucestershire Live Business Awards have established themselves as one of the most prestigious events in the local calendar. We are very proud to host the event each year and first being held 22 years ago. Take a look at a recap of the evening here.

The festivities start early at Cheltenham, with the Fashion and Gift Show in The Centaur for four days at the end of October. The event showcases a range of unique gifts that you won’t see on the high street. The whole team at the racecourse, really enjoy browsing around the stands and stalls picking up some presents to start the festive shopping.

The Centaur is such a versatile space and across The Showcase it was transformed into the first ever ‘Cheltoberfest’ beer festival for the two days. With a Bavarian Oompah Band, a range of Ale and Beer and brilliantly themed food, it made for a fantastic party atmosphere.

Over the next month, we host four live music and comedy acts in The Centaur. First up was Giovanni “Jack” Savoretti, the English solo acoustic singer of Italian descent, who performed to 2,000 people just four days after racing.

The teams worked tirelessly for a quick turnaround and it is great to see The Centaur used for so many different events.

Next up, we see Jools Holland bring his Rhythm & Blues Orchestra as part of the 32-date UK tour.

Our comedy nights kick off with the ever hilarious Jack Whitehall as part of his Work In Progress + Support Tour.  The Mouth from the South is back as Rob Beckett comes to Cheltenham Racecourse on Thursday 28th November.

The seated capacity of The Centaur means we host the University of Gloucester Graduation ceremonies at the end of November. This is certainly is a proud moment for the students that have worked hard to gain their qualifications and lovely to celebrate with their families.

We love collaborating and working with other operations teams from iconic sporting venues, a few weeks we welcomed the team from Silverstone. It was great to share some ideas, thoughts and future plans with another world class venue. It was exciting to hear their plans for a new museum and a hotel opening the week of the British Grand Prix next year.

In my next blog, I will look at the logistical aspects of hosting such a range of events throughout the racing season at Cheltenham Racecourse. We will also look at the hard work the teams put in to transform the spaces from raceday events, to a dinner in the evening and then back ready for racing in the morning.

Until next time….

Cheltenham Racecourse