Her Majesty The Queen will Visit Newmarket

Royals at Royal Ascot
The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall visit Royal Ascot, 18 June 2019.


Thursday 9th March 2023

Engagement 1:

Her Majesty The Queen will visit the British Racing School to mark their 40th anniversary.

In 2023, The British Racing School celebrates its 40th anniversary, having been officially opened by the then Prince of Wales on 23 November 1983. Over the past four decades it has trained thousands of people and equipped them with the skills to excel in Britain’s second biggest spectator sport, horse racing.

With over 25 specialist racing courses on offer, its flagship programme is the Foundation Course, a Level 2 diploma apprenticeship for 16-25 year olds, which prepares young people for jobs as stable staff; riding and looking after the sport’s racehorses. To date, some 4,000 young people have successfully completed the course and gone on to work in the industry including well-known jockeys Tom Marquand, Paul Hanagan and Josephine Gordon, all of whom have won the ‘Champion Apprentice Jockey’ title.

The British Racing School is also home to the Newmarket Pony Academy, a community project which uses horses and ponies to positively impact mental health and the well-being of children in Newmarket and its neighbouring communities. It is also the base for the Riding A Dream Academy which works to increase diversity and inclusion within the sport.

The Queen will first visit Newmarket Pony Academy (NPA) stables accompanied by the Chief Executive of The British Racing School, Andrew Braithwaite, and the Chair of Trustees of The British Racing School, Julia Budd. Her Majesty will meet local school children grooming the horses and, from the viewing gallery, watch students of the Flexible Learning Programme during a training lesson.

In the Pearce Barn, Her Majesty will be introduced to students and horses from the Foundation Course before viewing three “Best Turned Out” horses in the Main Yard.

Her Majesty will go on to observe students cantering and then meet workplace apprentices practising on the mechanical equicisers in the Simulator Room. The school was the first training provider in the world to make the MK9 Racewood Simulator, a fully immersive racing simulator, available to its students.

The visit will end in the Main Yard where Her Majesty will meet supporters, staff members and those who were riding on the straight gallop. Finally, the Queen will unveil a plaque to mark the 40th anniversary and a group photo opportunity will follow.

Engagement 2:

Her Majesty The Queen will unveil the painting of the Belvoir Huntsman, John Holliday, at the British Sporting Art Trust, Palace House, Palace Street, Newmarket.

British Sporting Art Trust

The British Sporting Art Trust (BSAT) was set up in 1977 to celebrate and promote all aspects of British sporting art. Her Majesty has had a close relationship with BSAT since 2021 with works commissioned by the BSAT featured in ‘Camilla’s Country Life’, when the then Duchess acted as the guest editor of Country Life in July 2022 and the accompanying television programme.

Palace House

The National Horseracing Museum is the home of the British Sporting Art Trust. Palace House is situated on the site of the palace built by King Charles II in 1671 for his bi-annual visits to Newmarket. The painting which Her Majesty will unveil will sit in the King’s Bedroom which was the centre of court life when King Charles II visited Newmarket.

The Painting

The subject of the painting is John Holliday who was Huntsman to the Belvoir Hounds from 2010 to 2022. The artist is Charles Church, an internationally renowned painter of horses, landscapes and country life. Born in 1970, he was brought up on the Northumbrian coast where he developed a keen eye for the horse from an early age and soon became a recognised talent as an equestrian artist.

With over 170 schoolchildren and volunteers greeting Her Majesty, the Queen will be met by John Chatfeild-Roberts (BSAT Chair of Trustees).

The Queen will be invited into Palace House, meeting the artist Charles Church and signing the visitors’ book.

Proceeding upstairs, into the King’s Bedroom, Her Majesty will unveil the Belvoir Huntsman before joining a reception of 40 invited guests.

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