Boodles May Festival Chester Race Company

Chester Races proposes mass testing for Boodles May Festival

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The organiser of Boodles May Festival has issued a statement, detailing its determination for the event to go ahead.

Chester Race Company plans to mass test attendees visiting the three-day festival – it would mean everyone attending the three-day festival from May 5-7, receiving a lateral flow test upon entry and enjoying fully socially distanced raceday experiences throughout the day.

The racecourse is hoping up to 5,000 guests will be able to attend on each of the three days of Boodles May Festival.

With the safety and well-being of all guests of paramount importance, Chester Race Company is currently drawing up a series of plans in preparation for the Government’s road map announcement.

Richard Thomas, chief executive of Chester Race Company, said: “In anticipation of the Government’s road map announcement, we have been working very hard with local authorities to build a clear operation procedure plan that hopefully could allow us to safely welcome back a limited number of spectators for the Boodles May Festival.

“The delivery of mass on-site testing is at the core of our stringent health and safety measures. Chester Racecourse could provide on-site testing facilities for 5,000 attendees per day with results expected in less than 20 minutes.

“Our overall aim is to deliver a safe, secure environment for an enjoyable three days of racing and we hope that testing will give an added confidence to our attendees, customers, and staff, whose health and safety is of paramount importance.”

He continued: “We’re proud of our innovative approach here at Chester and are keen to be one of the first venues to be able to bring crowds back safely to live sport. Chester is known for providing a unique race day experience for all attendees and we have developed a number of new socially distanced concepts which will deliver an exemplary level of safety and service – while ensuring the experience is the very best for all of our customers!”

If Government allows the festival to go-ahead, all racegoers would receive food and drink table service. There would be designated seating areas for everyone, with all-weather cover, giant screens to ensure everyone is able to get close to the racing and even personal book-making facilities.

Contactless order and collection points for food and drink would also be implemented across the course, with staggered arrival and departure times for guests, multiple testing areas and a one-way system in place.

Thomas added: “It will certainly be a ‘different’ racing experience this year – but it will be a very special one with absolute attention to detail to ensure our race-goers have the best experience possible – something we pride ourselves on always delivering here at Chester Racecourse.

“We will of course be operating within all Government guidelines and hope the new experience which we are offering will be something which is welcomed by those attending whom we hope will feel safe and secure but also able to enjoy the best possible time at the racing.”