Racecourse launches pioneering skin cancer campaign

Beverley Racecourse has announced a ground-breaking partnership with Yorkshire Cancer Research to raise awareness of the dangers of sun damage and over-exposure to harmful ultraviolet rays.

The campaign aims to protect racegoers and racecourse staff during the rest of the season following the recent hot spell which saw the UK record its hottest June day for 41 years.
Such have been the unprecedented temperatures that race organisers at Royal Ascot relaxed the strict dress code, allowing gentlemen in the Royal Enclosure to remove their jackets for the first time in the meeting’s history.

The partnership between Beverley Racecourse and Yorkshire Cancer Research is thought to be the first of its kind involving a sports venue and spanning both spectators and staff, with free sun protection available.It will launch on Friday, July 7, and Saturday, July 8, during East Yorkshire’s biggest racing weekend of the summer and continue through the season.

Beverley Racecourse Chief Executive Sally Iggulden and Adrienne Hodgson of Yorkshire Cancer Research, with stable staff.

Sally Iggulden, Chief Executive at Beverley Racecourse, said: “We’re delighted to team up with Yorkshire Cancer Research to raise awareness of the dangers of sun damage. Racegoers love nothing better than spending a day in the sun soaking up the wonderful atmosphere at courses like Beverley. But we’re very aware that it’s easy to forget to use sun cream and, as the recent heatwave demonstrates, we all need to protect our skin. 

“We’re launching the partnership at our big summer racing weekend. Both the Friday night and Saturday have an amazing party atmosphere and people really make a weekend of it. It’s a fantastic way to spend a summer evening and the following day with friends or family. We’re installing sun cream dispensers around the course so racegoers can stay protected and enjoy thrilling racing, entertainment and live music without worrying about sunburn or, even worse, long-term skin damage.

"The dispensers will remain in place throughout the season, so racegoers and staff will always be able to apply sun cream to protect themselves from the sun’s rays while around the course.”

Adrienne Hodgson, Relationship Officer at Yorkshire Cancer Research, said: “Staying safe in the sun is incredibly important. One blistering sunburn can double the risk of getting skin cancer later in life, and UV rays can damage your skin even on cloudy days. 

“With cases of skin cancer on the rise in Yorkshire, we’re aiming to spread our Sun Awareness message as far and wide as possible among communities in the region. Our new partnership with Beverley Racecourse will play a vital role in helping us reach people of all ages as they enjoy the outdoors this summer.”

Yorkshire Cancer Research has created wrist bands that change colour to indicate that skin protection from ultraviolet (UV) rays is required, and sun cream provided by Beverley Racecourse will be available free of charge in all bathrooms at the racecourse.

Raceday staff will hand out wallet-sized information guides on sun safety as well as the wrist bands, which will be on sale for £1, with proceeds going to Yorkshire Cancer Research.

In addition, Beverley Racecourse will give wrist bands, tubes of sun block and the information guides to all stable staff working over the weekend as part of its contribution to the racing industry’s Racing Staff Week. 

Sally Iggulden added: “We take our duty of care to stable staff and other employees very seriously indeed, so it’s important to us that this campaign applies equally to people working at the racecourse.”