Jockey Club Venues officially launched at Kempton Park Racecourse

Jockey Club Venues, a collection of fourteen key UK racecourses, was officially launched at Kempton Park Racecourse last week by group director of operations, John Baker.Part of The Jockey Club, the largest commercial group in British horseracing, the new division has been set up to specifically service the corporate, association and private meeting and event sector. Made up of some of the UK's most iconic racing venues, including Aintree, Cheltenham, Epsom Downs, Newmarket and Sandown Park, Jockey Club Venues will target corporate and agency event planners.

John Baker, group director of operations, said, "We have one of the largest collections of event spaces in the UK and want to maximise non-race day opportunities. Our racecourses are close to major road and rail links and we have a proven record in managing small and large scale events from the exhibition and association market through to the renowned Investec Derby at Epsom Downs, John Smith's Grand National at Aintree and The Cheltenham Festival."

More than 100 people attended the Oscar-themed launch and enjoyed a VIP menu of fresh seafood displayed on shaved ice, fresh rock and native oysters, chef carved smoked and cured salmon, Himalayan curries and a chef's carvery alongside racing.

Under the moniker Jockey Club Venues, a central reservation department has been created for all enquiries and confirmations. Contracts and agency commissions have also been standardised throughout the collection, as has quality service level reporting through BDRC.

Duncan Miller, director, business development at George P. Johnson, commented, "We are always looking for new venues and are impressed at the range, size and scope the racecourses have for larger scale events."

Gary Peters, managing director of Evolve Events, said, "We will definitely be trying to use some of the venues, as they will allow our clients to balance business with pleasure by hosting a meeting followed by a less formal get together at the horse racing. Some of the branding opportunities are fantastic, which is another positive pull for a corporate client seeking to reach new audiences."

Thomas Haydn Dee, Agency Director of Pineapple Parlour Venues, the Free UK Venue Finding agency also commented "The ever increasing demand for unusual and high quality venues to combat the dreary monotony of bland conference rooms is perfectly supplied by the fine event spaces provided at the individual racecourses in The Jockey Club portfolio." Pineapple Parlour this week incorporated Cheltenham Racecourse into its growing collection which includes other top sporting venues such as Royal Windsor Racecourse, Arsenal Emirates Stadium, Twickenham and others.

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