The Royal Ascot is a five-day horse racing event which dates back to 1711 when it was established by Queen Anne. It is marked by the stunning hats and formal wear of the royal family, which attends each day in an open carriage procession.
The Queen’s love of horses has been a long-standing interest of the royal family. She has attended the event every year but one since 1945. While expected to arrive in blue, she shone in vibrant green to mark the first day of the occasion.
The Duchess of Cambridge, who has become a favorite among fashionistas, was resplendent in her favorite designer, Alexander McQueen. Clothed in a white lace dress with a high collar, her hair was swept under her matching hat. She was accompanied by her husband, Prince William, the Duke of Cambridge.
Fun was experienced by many in the royal family as they smiled and joked while watching the horses thunder past.
It is a festival of opulence as many celebrate the race with various manners of frivolity. Cheers and drinks will abound as attendees enjoy the traditional elegance and customary revelry that mark the jubilant occasion.
This prestigious event will bring the most fashion conscious to the foreground. This year marks the first time women are invited to wear jumpsuits in the Royal Enclosure, though the pants are to be full length. The last time a style adjustment was made was when pantsuits were included in the 1970’s.
The Royal Ascot’s commercial director, Juliet Slot, shares the reasoning behind jumpsuit approval.
“We spoke to people in the fashion industry to take a sense of whether we should be considering it, as a result of that, I took it to the board and got their approval. We are very considered about everything we do. Our customers and our members, particularly in the Royal Enclosure, have high expectations of what formal attire is. The board all felt, based on the evidence that I shared with them, that this was the right decision.”
This describes the strict code which enforces the attire worn by participants of the event. It is a longstanding tradition that does not change lightly.
Despite the many joy-filled moments, the ceremony began with a minute of silence for the recent victims of the Grenfell Tower fire, as well as the victims of the London and Manchester terror attacks.
The chairman of Ascot Racecourse, Johnny Weatherby, shared his heartfelt emotion over the recent events that have shaken the country.
“We have all been deeply saddened by recent tragic events around the country. At the beginning of this important week for racing, we at Ascot Racecourse wish to pay our respects to the victims and offer support to the families who have been so terribly affected.”
A donation of £100,000 will be made from the racecourse to charities and services that will benefit those affected by the tragic events. Donation baskets will also be available at the exits for attendees who wish to contribute.
While the United Kingdom has been marked by devastating casualties of late, this will be a record year with over 300,000 in attendance. Armed guards will mingle with racegoers in an effort to keep visitors safe. It is a testament to the strength of the people and the commitment to maintain tradition.
Despite the tragedies, the Royal Ascot will continue with a parade of design that marks this time-honored occasion.
[Featured Image by John Phillips/Getty Images]