Published on 6th March 2024

The Mayor of Cheltenham, will be inviting guests to join her at Cheltenham racecourse to raise money for charity

With large numbers of visitors to Cheltenham expected for the return of the Cheltenham Festival in 2024, the council is working with key stakeholders and agencies to ensure everyone is safe.

Large numbers of spectators and visitors are expected, and additional measures have been brought in for the 2024 festival to combat antisocial behaviour. These include the council’s reimagined ‘Keep it clean’ and ‘War on Wee’ campaigns which aim to tackle antisocial behaviour; the racecourse’s ‘Love your Turf’ campaign; extra toilets in and around the town and more police and council officers stationed on Evesham Road at key times during the morning and evening.

Cllr Martin Horwood, cabinet member for customer and regulatory services, said: “The festival is a hugely important event for Cheltenham and we look forward to welcoming the return of festival spectators and visitors.  

‘’We’re again working with partners to ensure that during that week, previous challenges will be swiftly dealt with and residents and visitors to Cheltenham have a safe and enjoyable time.

“We are continuing our campaigns to keep Cheltenham clean and address concerns about taxi drivers illegally plying for hire, racegoers’ behaviour in the evening and night-time economy, particularly women’s safety. As part of this, officers continue to benefit from bystander training delivered last year through Gloucestershire Rape and Sexual Abuse Centre (GRASAC). Licensed venues have been provided with refresher training on ‘Ask for Angela’.

“I would like to thank council staff and all partners for all the extra efforts they make during race week.’’

Cllr Max Wilkinson, cabinet member economic development, culture, tourism and wellbeing, continued: "In the past - despite temporary toilets being installed along the main routes to the racecourse - I saw men brazenly weeing against a wall near the town centre.

"After the launch of the ‘war on wee’ campaign last year, the council is again working with partners to provide more public loos and offer water-repellent paint to businesses and residents to paint on their properties."


Officers will be proactively visiting and engaging with licensed bars, clubs and other licensed premises to ensure they comply with their licence conditions, check on SIA accredited door staff, and deal with any issues which may arise with these venues during the week. We will continue to work with the police in monitoring the licensed sexual entertainment venues and any venues that provide such entertainment on an occasional basis.

In partnership with Gloucestershire Constabulary and Glos OPCC, the council is promoting ‘Ask for Angela’, the not for profit scheme that aims to ensure that anyone who is feeling vulnerable or unsafe is able to get the support they need. The scheme works by ensuring staff complete training so that they understand what to do when someone Asks for Angela.

Superintendent Emma MacDonald, from the Cheltenham and Tewkesbury Local Policing Area, said: “We are working alongside partner agencies and Cheltenham Racecourse in planning for the event.

“Officers will be taking part in additional patrols, during both the day and night, as our main aim is to ensure that racegoers and those living in Cheltenham are able to enjoy themselves, but are also responsible and stay safe and I’d like to ask those attending to please keep this in mind.

“I’d like to encourage anyone with serious concerns to report these to an officer or call 101; any emergencies should be reported by calling 999, this includes incidents where there’s a threat to life, risk of harm, a crime is in progress, or offenders are nearby.”


The council continues to take a zero tolerance approach to unlawful taxi activity and will again seek to prosecute any unsafe or unlicensed taxis trying their luck during the 2024 Cheltenham Festival.

Racegoers are advised to only use pre-booked private hire vehicles or taxis licensed by the council waiting at our authorised taxi ranks; if they are hailing in the street, to only use taxis licenced by CBC.

Tewkesbury Borough Council's licensing team will be supporting Cheltenham Borough Council's licensing team to conduct checks on hire vehicles to ensure that they are safe and are legally licensed. Anyone using a taxi from a taxi rank, or hailing one from the street, should ensure that it is displaying a roof sign and a Cheltenham licence plate. Any vehicle that is found to be operating illegally will face further action.

Other measures in place include:

  • Support from other voluntary sector partners in the evening and night-time economy
  • Additional temporary toilets will be situated around the town and key routes to the racecourse
  • The police community hub will be located on the High Street outside Marks and Spencer
  • Additional taxi marshals will be on duty for the Montpellier and Promenade taxi ranks
  • South Western Ambulance Service’s minor injuries mobile treatment unit will be in operation, and
  • Gloucestershire Constabulary’s mounted police will be in town during all four evenings.

Visitors to Cheltenham are advised to plan their journey as traffic orders will be in place, visit Gloucestershire County Council highways webpages, see the PDF with road closures or follow @glosroads on social media.

Visitors to the Cheltenham Festival are encouraged to also check and their social media channels.

For media enquiries, contact: communications, telephone 01242 264231, email [email protected]

2024 Cheltenham Festival dates: 12 to 15 March.

Number of spectators expected:

  • Tuesday – 64K
  • Wednesday – 58k
  • Thursday - 68k
  • Friday – 68.5k

For further information on the festival visit

For more information on Ask for Angela, visit

Cheltenham is packed full of fantastic places to eat, drink and shop. The council’s has some handy guides to help racegoers make the most of their visit to the town which can be found at: This includes a list of local venues offering pre-race breakfasts to make sure visitors can eat well before their day at the races.