The Cheltenham Festival is the most prestigious jump racing event of the year and an event that Carlisle have been working on for over 30 years.
This year’s Festival threw everything at us. It saw familiar faces returning, some in new roles and many from the wider Carlisle family, who support the local team for the major events at the racecourse. We were also pleased to introduce many new faces to the events family, some of whom were stewarding their first ever event.
Day One - Champion Day
The first day started well, with a swiftly executed deployment of over 350 staff arriving for the first day of the event. This is thanks to Dave Kennerley and Frank De’Vall, who managed the process and ensured that the team were out and briefed on time. In order to perform their roles to the best of their ability, each team member needed to be presentable and kitted out with the correct tools for their role, this was thanks to Nick Higgs who single handily resourced uniform and equipment.
Our biggest obstacle was the weather, which was not kind with heavy rain, but in true team spirit they all stood together to get through the day rain and all.
To show our appreciation to those that stood out as performing above and beyond in their roles, the Core of Carlisle presentations began, alongside a special prize for the “employee of the day”.
Day Two - Ladies Day
Ladies Day arrived with great uncertainty due to the forecasted strong winds. The festival has already battled off the threat of equine flu, but this time Mother Nature wanted to throw a spanner in the works. The temporary structures which host thousands of people on the day were a concern for safety due to the strong winds, which meant that Cheltenham were still unsure whether they would go ahead even at 8am that same day! With the forecast showing signs of improvement the organisers took the decision to proceed with the days racing. Despite the odd strong gusts, we welcomed over 58,000 people to the racecourse for an enjoyable day of world class racing.
Day 3 & 4 - St Patrick's Day and Gold Cup Day
Day 3 welcomed over 68,000 people to the festival and a record breaking crowd for Gold Cup Day kept the team busy from gates opening to close.
Some 1500+ duties were completed during the festival period by Carlisle Support Services to ensure the over 266,000 people who attended the festival had a safe and enjoyable experience.
We would like to show our gratitude to the Supervisory Team who ensured that this event ran smoothly.
Following on from this 4 day event we have received a number of messages to say how much they enjoyed being part of the 2019 Cheltenham Festival. We are extremely pleased to have ensured a safe and secure event, but we are also proud that our personnel enjoy working for Carlisle Support Services as part of our events team.
Well done to every single individual who was part of the 2019 Cheltenham Festival Team.
Adrian White, Carl Taylor and Jason Taylor