Hats away for Royal Ascot 2021 as Harrogate milliner Jenny Roberts turns heads at Ladies' Day

As her hats wow at Royal Ascot Ladies’ Day, top Yorkshire milliner Jenny Roberts has made a floral headpiece to help raise money for the Brain Tumour Research charity’s Wear A Hat Day with Flowers. Stephanie Smith reports.

Award-winning Harrogate milliner Jenny Roberts has been making hats at a romping speed after being inundated with requests for her creations to wear at Royal Ascot Ladies’ Day.

It follows a challenging 15 months for the UK millinery business as the pandemic has seen weddings, race meetings and special events cancelled or put on hold across the UK.

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“It’s gone nuts with last minute clients going to Ascot,” Jenny said. “They were so late with tickets that everyone is trying to get organised.”

Harrogate milliner Jenny Roberts wears her own creation in aid of Brain Tumour Research.
Harrogate milliner Jenny Roberts wears her own creation in aid of Brain Tumour Research.

Jenny, who featured on the ITV News on Thursday night following the success of her Ascot hats, has been seeing clients non-stop at her hat shop at Cold Bath Place in Harrogate, where she keeps many styles of headpiece to try, buy, hire or use for inspiration for a bespoke creation.

She and fellow milliner Justine Bradley-Hill, whose studio is at Addingham, near Ilkley, have recently been accepted into the British Hat Guild, the prestigious millinery organisation headed by Stephen Jones. “We are two of only 20 milliners who have joined the guild this year. We are the only northern milliners, from what I can see, and it’s a bit of an honour to have been included - I’m thrilled,” Jenny said.

Jenny is also taking part in the Wear a Hat Day with Flowers campaign, which took place yesterday, urging everyone to make and/or wear a hat decorated with fresh flowers to raise money for Brain Tumour Research.

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“My hat is made on a handmade wire frame with white peonies from my garden, vined onto the frame to form the show-stopping piece.”

Jenny's hat can be seen in the window of her Harrogate shop. Last year, the inaugural Wear A Hat Day with Flowers raised more than £40,000 to support research into brain cancer and tumours. Details can be found at braintumourresearch.org.

Meanwhile, Royal Ascot Ladies’ Day took place on Thursday as part of five days of racing - the final day is today - at the celebrated event that attracts many of the world’s finest horses to compete for more than £8m in prize money.

This year’s Royal Ascot is part of the second phase of the Government's Events Research Programme, with a capacity of 12,000 guests on each of the five days.

Royal Ascot is also synonymous with sartorial elegance, exquisite fashion and magnificent millinery creations. Jenny Roberts continues to fly the flag for Yorkshire as one of the most sought-after milliners in the UK.