24hr Support Line 0800 6300 443
4 June 2024


Relaxation, friendship and support were the clear winners at this year’s Racing Welfare beneficiary holiday, which saw retired beneficiaries brought together to enjoy a well-deserved break.

The Racing Welfare Beneficiary Holiday 2024 which was generously funded by Godolphin, was based at Warner Leisure Corton, Suffolk, and took place from Friday 17th – Friday 24th May.

The team at Racing Welfare were delighted to welcome a total of 33 people on holiday which included retired beneficiaries and their guests, hailing from all over the country.

By providing holiday places, Racing Welfare aims to bring people from the retired racing community together, reduce loneliness and social isolation and offer a much-needed respite break for them, their partners and carers. Holiday places are offered to people who otherwise might struggle to access a break due to illness, disability or for other reasons and provides a supportive environment with a team of welfare officers in place throughout the week.

During the week, many of the guests benefitted from the use of the facilities at the holiday village including the indoor pool, steam room and sauna, games lawn, crazy golf, cinema room, archery and beach garden. Evening meals and entertainment were also enjoyed, including dance lessons, quizzes, cabaret acts and discos.

As well as spending time relaxing with new and existing friends at the accommodation, many also capitalised on the beautiful coastal location and went for beach walks or took trips to the nearby seaside towns of Lowestoft and Great Yarmouth.

Guests were also treated to an afternoon at Great Yarmouth Races where they enjoyed fantastic views of the track from the hospitality suite while enjoying a two-course lunch before the racing action started. Mick Quinn, racing broadcaster and former trainer and professional footballer, also popped in to run through the six races on the card and offer his top tips.

One of the beneficiaries on the holiday was Fiona Todd, 64, whose husband Victor worked for many trainers in Newmarket including Luca Cumani and John Gosden, before retiring and moving to the North-East. Fiona said: “Racing Welfare staff are amazing – we can’t thank them enough. They have worked so hard to bring us all together and they have gone beyond anything anybody could have wished for. We couldn’t have had this holiday without them.”

Beneficiary John Gorman, 76, who had a career working in numerous yards in the Middleham area, said: “On the holiday I’ve got to know a lad who used to work in Middleham a long time ago up where we were. We’ve been chatting and we know the same people and were reminiscing about our time – he was over the moon to talk about those memories. We go back a lot of years with some of the people too so it’s very nice to talk to them about what they’ve done since they left or retired. Racing Welfare is so important because if you need anything you can call them for help and this holiday has been great for us to relax and reminisce about our time in racing.”

Penny Taylor, UK Charities Manager at Godolphin said: “Godolphin is delighted to be able to support Racing Welfare’s beneficiaries’ holiday. To be able to recognise and thank people who have dedicated their lives to the racing industry aligns perfectly with our charitable purpose and it is wonderful to hear about the enjoyment this week has bought to people. Our thanks must also go to the Racing Welfare team for organising and facilitating this wonderful opportunity.”

Emma Richardson, Welfare Executive at Racing Welfare said: “To say everyone had fun is an understatement. We’ve had an incredible week where new friendships have been made and old ones have been strengthened, everyone has been so relaxed and happy and we’ve all had a great time – beneficiaries, their guests and staff alike.

“My highlights of the holiday include joining in with a line-dancing lesson with our beneficiaries and my colleagues too. We were then invited up to the dance floor to demonstrate the routine we had learned, and everyone enjoyed taking part or watching us perform. We also did some archery and rifle shooting in teams. The great thing was that nobody really knew each other at the beginning but by the end everyone was cheering on their team and it really brought us all together.

“I really hope everyone takes away a sense of happiness from their time here because everyone has got on so well and enjoyed themselves. We’d like to thank Godolphin for their generosity in funding this holiday and helping our beneficiaries to relax, spend quality time with loved ones and make new friends as well as have fun.”

If you would like to join in or you know someone who would benefit from participating in Racing Welfare’s programme of events for retired beneficiaries, please call Racing’s Support Line on 0800 6300 443.