Chester Heritage Festival launch event will make a welcome return at 2020’s Roman Day Fixture | Chester Racecourse
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Chester Heritage Festival launch event will make a welcome return at 2020’s Roman Day Fixture

Chester Racecourse’s Roman Day fixture, sponsored by Principal Partner MBNA, is a firm favourite in the Roodee calendar. The first Saturday meeting in Chester’s annual season of racing attracts a varied attendance of Cestrians, racegoers, families and for the first time in 2019, Chester Heritage Festival participants and supporters.

Synonymous with both the heritage of the racecourse and the city of Chester, Roman Day has long been a celebration of the oldest racecourse in the world and its unique position within the city. This year, Chester Racecourse teamed up with the Chester Heritage Festival to deliver a pre-cursor launch event on the Roodee and bolster the extra-curricular schedule supplementing the day’s seven races. The launch began with a celebratory parade down Watergate Street, followed by an opening race day proclamation from Chester’s Town Crier before the on-track action began. Various activities on the Open Course entertained both young and old alike, raising awareness of the festival and telling folk historical tales of the city and racecourse’s illustrious past.

The success of 2019’s festival launch event supported an increased attendance of 40% across the festival calendar of activity in June, with over 2,200 people enjoying the varied schedule of heritage activities, talks and tours on offer.

The Chester Heritage Festival has become an important annual fixture in the city’s calendar of events. The partnership is led by the Chester Civic Trust and Cheshire West and Chester Council with the active involvement of Chester Race Company, Marketing Cheshire, the Guild of Chester Tour Guides, University of Chester students and many others.

Stephen Langtree, chairman of the festival partnership, said “It seems so right that a beautiful city like ours, with over 2000 years of history, should celebrate its heritage with an annual festival. We have been careful to build the event gradually over the last five years to the point now where the festival offers such a diverse and exiting variety of events in a nine-day period”.

Councillor Louise Gittins, Cheshire West and Chester Council said, “It’s great to see how the Chester Heritage Festival has evolved over the past few years. Chester’s heritage is nationally and internationally important and having an annual festival to celebrate this significance is fantastic for the city’s residents and visitors”  

Stephanie Hughes, Head of Marketing at Chester Race Company said, “we’re pleased to be partnering with Chester Heritage Festival again in 2020 and helping to raise awareness of the festival event through an exciting schedule of launch activities at our Roman Day fixture. The obvious synergies between the racecourse and the historic narrative of Chester provide an exciting opportunity to engage with racegoers and general public alike and we look forward to again bringing this story of heritage to life in May next year.”

The 2020 Heritage Festival programme will run between 19 – 28 June, preceded by the festival launch event which will take place on Saturday 23 May at MBNA Roman Day, with a varied schedule of supporting activities due to be unveiled in the new year. Members of the public can currently take advantage of an Early Bird window and purchase discounted tickets to the fixture before Tuesday 31 December (terms apply). Take £10 off any general admission ticket for Winning Post, County Stand and Tattersalls Enclosure before the deadline. Chester residents living in a CH1-4 postcode can also benefit from discounted tickets offer for a limited time. Find out more about all offers and the day itself online here. Alternatively, contact the Box Office on 01244 304 600. Find out more about the Chester Heritage Festival online here