I would be very happy if it was Royal Ascot every single day. I love the elegance, I like the rush of excitement when I see the races, I love the outfits, I love the names of the horses, the colours the jockeys wear, I love the fact that men have top hats and I even like the slightly crazy dress code. In PR & Marketing terms, it is a surefire winner with The Queen attending, and this time for the first time, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. Plus we have the most ostentatious, headline grabbing hats and fab-u-lous outfits that secure column inches and social media squares for the whole week!
I first went to Royal Ascot when I first moved to London and I made a fatal error of leaving my jacket at home. Out in the countryside, an hours train ride from Waterloo, the temperature can be a few degrees cooler and on chilly days, it turns the area into a giant wind tunnel! Brrrr. So this time, when I was invited to Royal Ascot by The Nth Degree Club, I took my flat shoes for the train and took a chic white jacket as a cover-up.
I will be honest and say things were a little last minute so I loaned a neutral hat from my friend Fatinah which she picked up from Fenwicks to team with a little black dress I got from French Connection. Hats in the Royal Enclosure have to have a solid base of 10cm (say what? *gets tape measure out) and dresses must have straps (no strapless/one shoulder or strappy (eek) AND they have to be of an elegant below the knee length (I know right) so here I am, in regulation Royal Ascot dress. Has to be said, not all the enclosures are not this strict – so check before you travel 😉 I finished off with Valentino sandals as they are super comfortable for a long day with a medium block heel which will not sink into the grass (CRUCIAL) and my Lulu Guinness pearl handbag which has been to every wedding I’ve attended in the last few years. The hat thankfully had a headband so it didn’t completely antahiliate my hair like a full on hat would.
I arrived at 10.30am and we were served Champagne in the car park – which is apparently a big tradition -who knew? I can get on board with that though! Our home for the day was the Wyndham Club where we were served Champagne and a three course lunch with the most beautiful seafood and strawberry dessert before heading to see The Queen arrive sharp at 2pm.
I love that she goes everyday – thats four amazing outfits and hat combinations every day! I managed to snap the Royal family arriving from the stands as everyone sung God Save the Queen. There are 6 races throughout the day and by a stroke of luck I managed to get into the pre-race paddock to see the horses going out and coming back for their races where I spotted Frankie Dettori just coming back.
After the racing which finishes at 5.30pm, there’s singing in the bandstand to finish the day off. I can’t wait to go back next year!
For more visit The Nth Degree Club
For more on Ascot https://www.ascot.co.uk