Queen gives race go-ahead

John Gilburn, managing director at Owlerton Greyhound Stadium, with a letter from Her Majesty the Queen.
John Gilburn, managing director at Owlerton Greyhound Stadium, with a letter from Her Majesty the Queen.
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Owlerton Greyhound Stadium has been given a renewed Royal seal of approval - by the Queen herself.

Stadium bosses sent a letter to Buckingham Palace asking for permission to hold the annual Queen Mother Memorial Cup on Mother’s Day, Sunday, March 30.

“To hold an event in a Royal name, you must seek permission from the Palace first,” said stadium managing director John Gilburn.

“ Otherwise the event can be stopped all together,”

Buckingham Palace replied promptly, giving the Royal go-ahead to this year’s event.

A letter from the Queen said: “I hope that once again this event will prove to be an enjoyable and successful occasion for everyone involved,”

The event has attracted sell-out crowds for the past 10 years.

It is the only such race in the city - or across the greyhound industry - to have received the Royal honour.

Mr Gilburn said the meet is always a great day out for all the family on Mother’s Day.

“We have been holding the Queen Mother Cup at the stadium every Mother’s Day for more than 10 years,” he said.

“And when the Queen Mother passed away we began staging it in her honour, re-naming the event the Memorial Cup.”

Mr Gilburn said greyhounds from all over the country will be competing in this year’s Memorial cup.

“The event has now become one of the most prestigious open races in the racing calendar,” he said.