Ripon Racecourse is celebrating today after retaining their place amongst the top eleven racecourses in the country as part of the VisitEngland Quality Assured Racecourse Scheme.
The scheme allows VisitEngland to benchmark racecourses against other attractions, ensuring that standards of customer experience remain high in the face of competition from other sporting and leisure venues.
The national tourism boards provide a rating on the racecourse as a quality day out, taking into account efficiency and friendliness of customer service, cleanliness of facilities as well as speed, quality and efficiency of the racecourse operation.
Collaborating with VisitEngland allows racecourses to benchmark against other attractions, ensuring that standards of customer experience remain high in the face of such competition.
The top eleven in England and Wales for 2016 (listed alphabetically) were: Aintree, Ascot, Cheltenham, Chester, Doncaster, Haydock Park, Newbury, Ripon, Sedgefield, Wetherby and York.
For the RCA Excellence Accolades, there are six categories covering all aspects of the racecourse experience, with Ripon’s ‘Club Dining Room Restaurant’ being the only racecourse to secure an Accolade for a Quality Café/Restaurant.
You can read the full RCA press release here
Sir Gary Verity, Chief Executive of Welcome to Yorkshire, said:
“Horse racing is part of the lifeblood of Yorkshire – with more racecourses than any other region of the UK, nowhere is as passionate about horse racing as Yorkshire. “The county is synonymous with the sport of the kings so it comes as no surprise that four of our nine top class courses have been named in the top 11 in the country. “I’d like to congratulate those at Ripon for their hard work in making Yorkshire one of the best places in the country to watch top class horse racing.”
RCA Chief Executive Stephen Atkin said:
“Our partnership with both tourism boards gives added assurance to customers whenever they visit a racecourse. The results show that racecourses large and small can all compete on the same level when it comes to quality and that is one of the unique attractions of British racing.”
Managing Director at Ripon Racecourse, James Hutchinson, said:
“We are thrilled to have retained both our status within the top 11 and the excellence accolade for our Club Dining. For our restaurant to have to have been to be singled out and voted the best in the country by the likes of VisitEngland is incredible.”
The Racecourse Association, formed in 1907, is the trade association for British racecourses. The RCA serves the interests of its 59 British racecourse members both inside and outside the sport, empowering them to be the best venues that they can be.
The RCA works on behalf of racecourses to represent their views within the sport through the tripartite structure of the Members’ Agreement alongside BHA and The Horsemen’s Group. Outside of horseracing, we work alongside the Government, other sports and leisure venues, and national charities to meet the needs of racecourses.
Additionally, the RCA encourages and facilitates racecourse community engagement, involvement in horse welfare initiatives, responsible drinking campaigns, and various other partnerships within the sport.
The Quality Assured Racecourse Scheme is administered by the RCA and implemented by VisitEngland and VisitScotland. All 60 British Racecourses are independently assessed by a trained assessor.
Criteria for RCA Excellence Accolades:
- Quality Café/Restaurant- achieve 90% or higher in Catering (full section), Staff (catering only) and a 5 rating for ‘Catering Cleanliness’