MCE planned and undertook a public affairs campaign, which included stakeholder briefings and a presentation to the AERA Committee in the Northern Ireland Assembly, to secure this legislative change required to secure the future of this premier sporting venue.
This legislative change saw Down Royal once again be eligible for support through the Horse Racing Fund, and these payments being reinstated.
The Horse Racing Fund was designed to support horse racing in Northern Ireland, but when DRPR commenced operation of Down Royal Racecourse in January 2019 it was no longer entitled to this funding.
The challenge was to change the Horse Racing Order.
Virtual briefings and site visits were conducted with each of the political stakeholders identified. Additionally, letters were written and sent to the relevant Minister and Committee members.
The team at Down Royal was invited to attend the Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs Committee to brief members and answer questions. In order to prepare for this, MCE ran a mock committee with the Down Royal team.
Following our successful engagement with politicians we achieved our legislative aim – the required changes to the Horse Racing Order (1990).
As a result of this, payments from the Horse Racing Fund to Down Royal Racecourse were reinstated.