20 Feb 2013 Pre-2014 Releases

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) are today delighted to announce the successful applicants for the first round of funding for the 2012-13 British Horseracing Grant Scheme.

The Scheme, funded from British Horseracing’s share of the net proceeds from the sale of the Tote in June 2011 and launched alongside DCMS in August 2012, supports worthwhile projects involved in, and associated with, the British thoroughbred Racing and Breeding industries by distributing grants in accordance with European Union State Aid regulations.

£1 million was allocated to the Scheme from British Racing’s £10 million allocation of Tote proceeds for the 2012-13 Financial Year. The remainder of the Tote proceeds received from Government to date have been allocated to The Racing Foundation.

A competitive application process was launched in August 2012, with over 50 submissions received by the BHA – who are administering the Scheme under contract from DCMS. The British Horseracing Grant Scheme Awards Committee, formed of representatives from the BHA, Racecourse Association and Horsemen’s Group, met in November to discuss the applications and made Awards totalling over £600,000 to 23 successful applicants.

Paul Bittar, Chief Executive of the BHA, said:

“British Racing has always been clear in its intention to use the proceeds from the sale of the Tote to create both a long-term legacy for the sport and provide seed funding for projects that deliver benefits to the industry over an extended period.

“The British Horseracing Grant Scheme provides a mechanism by which we can grant targeted funding for a series of exciting projects across the industry, which otherwise would simply have not been able to get off the ground.

“While the Scheme will undoubtedly evolve in future years, the principle that it is a possible source of funding for new and innovative initiatives supported by as broad an industry base as possible, rather than to simply substitute existing expenditure, is one to which the Awards Committee is very much committed.”

Hugh Robertson MP, Minister of State for Sport and Tourism at the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, said:

“Congratulations to all the applicants who have been successful in applying for the British Horseracing Grant Scheme. This funding, the first proceeds from the sale of the Tote, will help support a variety of different projects that will benefit the sport of horseracing and its associated industries.”

One of the successful applicants to the British Horseracing Grant Scheme was South Gloucestershire and Stroud College for their new year-long vocational jockey training course. Simon Panes, Director of Sports Academies at South Gloucestershire and Stroud College, said:

“Our Jockey Academy programme is designed for 16-18 year olds who seriously want the opportunity to pursue a career as a jockey alongside full-time education – combining academic studies with work placements at local trainers’ yards including Gold Cup winning trainer Jonjo O’Neill.

“The Academy will be managed by Graham Skeats who has a wealth of experience within the Racing industry.

“The programme, which has received significant funding from the British Horseracing Grant Scheme in order to get underway, will be the based at the home of National Hunt Racing at Cheltenham, and will also offer specific mentoring to its students from industry professionals.”

Another successful applicant for funding was the British Horseracing Education and Standards Trust (BHEST), for their project to create a Children’s Racebook, providing children who attend racecourses with an accessible guide as to how Racing works alongside fun, educational activities. Judith Allen, Executive Director of BHEST, said:

“We’re delighted to be developing this exciting new Children’s Racebook in partnership with other key Racing organisations.

“The British Horseracing Grant Scheme’s support will enable us to create and disseminate the Racebook to 25,000 children – something that wouldn’t have been possible without their match funding.

“We know from delivering our Racing to School programme to 10,000 children each year that the more children understand about Racing, the more they want to engage with it.”

A full list of successful applicants for the first round of the 2012-13 British Horseracing Grant Scheme, and further information on how the Scheme operates, can be found at the webpage