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The annual British sporting calendar is bursting with events throughout the year. Some require dress-codes and etiquette while others are crammed with spectators lining river banks, streets and anywhere else there’s a spot to grab.

An unmissable sporting calendar

Discover Britain's sporting prowess

From pomp and pageantry at Royal Ascot to breath-taking speed at Silverstone and crunching tackles during the Six Nations, you can experience a taste of Britain’s sporting pedigree all year-round. It’s time to delve into our sporting season and discover the events you won’t want to miss.

What you need to know before attending Royal Ascot

Royal Ascot takes place over five days in June and is among the most famous of horse-racing events. Happening in the heart of Berkshire, the race meeting is often attended by members of the Royal family.
Men dressed in morning suits and top hats watching a race

The Royal Procession

The Royals arrive at 2pm each day in horse-drawn carriages which follow the Straight Mile section of the course, passing all enclosures and the parade ring, before the Royal party enter their own box at the top of the Grandstand.


The Saturday, and Ladies Day on the Thursday, are the hottest tickets, so booking early through the Royal Ascot website is always a good idea. Enclosure upgrades and add-ons include access to private bars and fine-dining packages.

Royal Ascot Race Meeting at the prestigious Ascot racecourse in Berkshire. Young woman wearing a large white hat with feather and floral detail. Chatting to a friend.

Dress codes

Dress codes differ wildly depending on which enclosure you choose. In the Royal Enclosure, men must wear a waistcoat and tie, a top hat and black shoes. Dresses worn by ladies must fall just above the knee. Hat-wearing here almost becomes its own sporting event, and has its own rules. The Grandstand has all men wearing suits, and all women in hats, while the Silver Ring is much more relaxed with no formal dress code.

Dining options

Pack a picnic or enquire about a range of hospitality and fine dining options, ranging from Michelin-starred food in the Royal Enclosure to The Villiers Club - a private garden at the heart of the Village Enclosure featuring live bands, sandwiches and sweet treats.

Travelling to Ascot Racecourse

Less that a ten-minute walk gets you from Ascot station to Royal Ascot. London Waterloo is under an hour away by train and Reading station is under 30 minutes away. By car, Ascot is within 10 miles of the M4, M3 and M25 motorways.

British ticketed annual sporting events

Whether you’re raising a glass of Pimms at Wimbledon or you fancy a bet on the Grand National, Britain is home to a range of exciting ticketed sporting events.

England, Wales and Scotland are among the teams competing in the Six Nations tournament every February and March.

Two female staff from Devonshire Balham Public House holding signs for free tickets to Six Nations Rugby, Twickenham

England’s oldest and most-loved tennis championship.

Wimbledon Tennis championships

A race meeting featuring Europe’s most exhilarating and challenging equine steeplechase.

Crowd watching Grand National at Aintree Racecourse

High octane F1 motor racing at the home of British motorsport.

Celebrating a victory at Silverstone Circuit

Head to North London’s Alexandra Palace to see the world’s best players battling it out.

World Darts Championship

Free to watch, mass participation sports

Arrive early, bag the best spots and enjoy these free British sporting events.
Woman wearing a hat drinking while watching a boat race

Henley Royal Regatta

Grab a picnic and a Pimms and settle by the water’s edge at this pretty Thames riverside town. The Henley Royal Regatta is one of the biggest meetings in rowing, with crews from around the world competing in various Challenge Trophies.

Runner wearing Wonder Woman outfit at the London Marathon

London Marathon

Come and cheer on anyone from a guy in a gorilla suit to world-class athletes as they wind their way around England’s capital in this grueling 26.2-mile road race. Watch them pound past the historic Cutty Sark in Greenwich at mile six, pant past Tower Bridge at mile 12, puff their way to the London Eye and hopefully keep going on past Big Ben at mile 25, before the London Marathon finishes in front of Buckingham Palace.

Men's crew rowing in the Boat Race

The Boat Race

Watch the competitive annual boat race along a four-mile stretch of the River Thames between Oxford and Cambridge Universities in a sporting institution that dates all the way back to 1829. Take in the views from a Riverside pub or find a spot along the West London tow paths and cheer on the crews. 

A woman celebrating while crossing the finish line on a run in Newcastle

Great North Run

This half marathon in North East England sees participants run between Newcastle-upon- Tyne and South Shields. Crammed with spectator activities, entertainment and vantage points right along its 13.1-mile route, the Tyne Bridge is a particularly popular viewing spot for the Great North Run.

Key sporting cities