David Amess, Member of Parliament for Southend West, met with TV presenter and sports journalist Clare Balding at the ‘Racing Together’ reception at the House of Commons this week.
The event was organised by the British Horseracing Authority to promote the vital role that horseracing plays in the British economy and in communities across the UK. After football, horseracing is the second best attended sport in the country, far ahead of sports such as Rugby Union and cricket. The sport provides thousands of jobs in areas as wide-ranging as breeding, catering, broadcasting and betting and in the five years to 2008 it provided an estimated £1.5 billion in tax receipts to the government.
Over 180 charity race days are run each year by racecourses, generating around £1.8 million annually for charitable courses. David was delighted to learn more about the British Racing Authority’s work with charities and schoolchildren and was impressed by Clare Balding’s work as not only a broadcaster but as an advocate of horse welfare.