IT is without thanks to some sections of the national media that Ascot at York was such a phenomenal success.

Try as they may, their efforts to portray the cloth cap and ferrets image and the sometimes snide comments of the so-called fashion experts fell flat on its face according to Ascot regulars and organisers who thoroughly enjoyed their trip to York Knavesmire.

Thanks should also not go to the minority of greedy property and hotel owners and certain other businesses in the hospitality industry who, together with the national media, succeeded in clearing the city of its regular tourist business.

Businesses such as the pub charging £4 a pint, the private hire company charging an £8 surcharge and the hotel asking £600 a night.

The only mistake was in not fully understanding exactly what Royal Ascot is.

The event was on Knavesmire and this was where people wanted to be. They had no interest in wandering around the city and, coupled with the large amount of day visitors, had no desire to linger at the end of the day's racing.

If we are lucky some of them may return for an informal visit, but no thanks to those mentioned above or all the other pessimistic moaners who tried to rubbish the event.

Thanks must go to all concerned and particularly the traffic management team which was outstanding.

Can we keep this for all the big meetings instead of the usual city centre traffic chaos? I have never understood why race traffic is directed through Fulford and through the city centre.

Charlie Stone,

Millfield Road,


Updated: 10:42 Tuesday, June 21, 2005