The year 2022 is quite special for the Brits, because it marks their Queen's 70th year on the throne. From June 2 to June 5, the UK, Commonwealth and Overseas Territories will join in the celebration of the Queen's Platinum Jubilee.
For the bookies, they all agreed to mark the Queen's historical event by donating to some of the UK's top charities all the profits they make from this month's Britannia Stakes race at Royal Ascot.
The Britannia Stakes will take place at the Royal Ascot on June 16. The charities that stand to benefit are: ABF The Soldiers' Charity, Ascot Racecourse Supports Community Fund, Cotswold Riding for the Disabled, Sue Ryder, and The Ivors Academy Trust.
Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) members bet365, BetVictor, Betway, Bet with Ascot, Entain (Coral, Ladbrokes), Fitzdares, Flutter (Betfair, Paddy Power, Sky Bet), Kindred (Unibet), Rank Group (Grosvenor Sport), Tote, Virgin Bet and William Hill have all signed up to the fundraising campaign.
The bookies will donate all profits they make from win and each-way bets, after levy and duties are deducted, on the big-field heritage handicap.
Should they not make a profit on the race, they have agreed to make a donation to the charities.
This comes after the success of Britannia Stakes fundraising drive last year, when £1.25 million was raised for a variety of good causes.
The BGC hopes that this benevolent initiative shall have punters enjoy a race where, even if they lose, they know charities are guaranteed to win.
BGC Chief Executive Michael Dugher said, "I am absolutely delighted that the BGC's largest members are once again raising vital funds at the Royal meeting for some of the country's top charities, especially in this the year of the Queen's Jubilee.
"Her Majesty's passion for racing is known across the globe. It's a sport that has the power to bring people together and Royal Ascot is one of the great highlights of the calendar. Millions of people enjoy a flutter and I'm proud that betting companies will donate their profits from one of Royal Ascot's top races, the Britannia Stakes, to go towards some great charities. I am once again indebted to everyone at Royal Ascot for their continued support".
Ascot Racecourse Managing Director Alastair Warwick said, "We are delighted that Royal Ascot will once again play a part in raising valuable funds for these deserving charities. know this fantastic initiative from the betting industry is hugely appreciated and the money will be used for some extremely worthwhile causes."
Chairman of ABF The Soldiers' Charity for Berkshire Brigadier Peter Walker OBE said, "ABF The Soldiers' Charity would like to thank the members of the Betting and Gaming Council for their support last year and very kindly agreeing to make a donation again during Royal Ascot. We are the Army's national charity and stand at the forefront of support for the Army family, last year supporting 60,000 people in 63 countries around the world. Our charity believes that all serving soldiers, veterans and their immediate families should have the opportunity to avoid hardship and enjoy independence and dignity."
Director of Fundraising at Sue Ryder Caroline Graham said, "Sue Ryder is delighted to be chosen to be one of the charities that benefit from the Britannia Stakes at the Royal Ascot to celebrate the Queen's Jubilee. Her Majesty has been Sue Ryder's Patron since 1993, so it makes it even more special to be one of the charities involved this year. The money that is donated will go on to help us provide more care for more people through our palliative, neurological and bereavement support."
Chair of The Ivors Academy Trust Cliff Fluet said, "We are thrilled that for the first time The Ivors Academy Trust will benefit from a donation through the Britannia Stakes race at Royal Ascot. The UK is a dynamic cultural powerhouse with a music industry to be proud of, yet younger songwriters and composers from disadvantaged backgrounds are finding it harder than ever to start and sustain a career in music. This donation will help fund our life-changing programs that equip music creators with the skills, contacts and self-belief they need to succeed."