High Fives As Musselburgh Racecourse Secure VisitScotland Star Ratings
VisitScotland has revised its Quality Assurance scheme with a new method of grading visitor attractions and in awarding Musselburgh a 5 Star award said: “The new system has seen some scores fall to a greater or lesser degree amongst many visitor attractions, but no such loss has in fact occurred here.”
Gaining an overall score of 89%, Musselburgh obtained a 93% rating for its pre-arrival services for visitors, 91% for Core Experience and 90% each for Staff Service and Efficiency, Cleanliness and Toilets, while Hospitality and Friendliness and Arrival was awarded 86% and 85% respectively.
Staff working across the racecourse were singled out for praise with inspectors stating they were “friendly and attentive, knowledgeable and never less than amiable and efficient.”
On arrival at Musselburgh, external black and gold signage was “stylish and effective”, directional signage inside the course was prominent, and well-designed lay-out maps around the site helped with orientation, making it unlikely visitors would not be aware of all onsite features.
Across Musselburgh’s multiple catering options, from the a la carte Epperston restaurant, to the Harris Tweed bistro and concessionary food stands “it was evident that high standards are being maintained”, said the report. Judges said they were very impressed with the standards of cleanliness around the whole grounds, which “contributed to the overall impression of high quality within the racecourse”.
In addition to the 5-star rating Musselburgh was also accredited with VisitScotland’s Taste Our Best quality assurance rating, which is awarded to attractions which use quality Scottish ingredients, fresh, seasonal produce, local food with food miles kept to a minimum, and friendly staff who are knowledge about the food served.
VisitScotland also requires businesses to undertake a number of sustainability actions in areas such as use of energy, water, waste, transport, natural heritage and customer and community engagement. The racecourse was required to fulfil 11 sustainability actions out of 36 options but overdelivered by completing 27 actions.
Musselburgh Racecourse senior operations and commercial manager, Sarah Montgomery, said: “We were the first Scottish racecourse to be awarded a VisitScotland five star rating in 2006 and we are delighted to have maintained that very high standard for the 11th consecutive year.
“This accreditation does not happen by accident but is the result of planning, strategy and careful execution of a wide range of policies by our very hard working team. Credit is due to everyone involved, from our small executive team to our highly professional operational and ground staff, to the casual race day employees who work in customer care, bars, restaurants, betting facilities, merchandise and security.
“On the back of a highly successful summer Flat season with record attendances for Stobo Castle Ladies Day and the Edinburgh Gin Edinburgh Cup, we are preparing for an equally successful jumps season over the autumn and winter season. This 5-star award confirms Musselburgh’s position at Scotland’s most stylish and enterprising racecourse and a place where visitors can expect the highest levels of service.”