The Season: Our leading guide to the British Summer Social Season

The British Summer Social Season


Our annual British Summer Social Season Guide previews all of the top events around Britain that form part of The Season. For many years, it has been known as the ultimate guide to The Season and our experts bring you the key dates, latest news and plenty of fashion, sport and social features. Our guide to The Season is hugely popular and it has been highlighted by many media publications and broadcasting channels, including the BBC’s Today programme.

We will be updating the guide to The Season with events information and features throughout the year. The guide includes key dates, preview coverage, interviews and features.

All editorial and advertising enquiries, as well as media requests, for The Season: A guide to the British Summer Social Season can be directed to

The Prince and Princess of Wales at Royal Ascot


Looking Back

The RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2023 in pictures

The Sloaney’s Editor rides in the Magnolia Cup at Glorious Goodwood

Read The Gallop to Goodwood

Royal Ascot 2023: Historic racing and fabulous fashion

Badminton Horse Trials Trot Up 2022: The Fashion Report – The Sloaney

The Season 2022: A successful debut for Salon Prive London – The Sloaney

Key Dates for 2024

The British Social Season returned with a bang last year and there is much excitement building already about the main events that occupy the calendar for 2023. From Cheltenham to Chelsea Flower Show, Wimbledon to Henley Royal Regatta, Royal Ascot to Glastonbury Festival, there is something for everyone.

patricia bech

Polo in the Park is one of the top events

-2024 Dates-

March ¦ April ¦ May ¦ June ¦ July ¦ August ¦ September


The Cheltenham Festival (12th – 15th March)

Four days of fantastic racing awaits those visiting the Cheltenham Festival. The first major social event of the year takes place in March. It may be blessed with sunshine or snow, so wrap up warm for the opening outing of The Season. There is always a great atmosphere at Cheltenham, with top class racing, excellent shopping and good fun to be had by all.

British Eventing Olympian Zara Tindall is a regular at Cheltenham and usually frequents The Green Room


What to wear to Cheltenham Races in March | The Season 2024


The Season 2020: A preview of the Cheltenham Festival schedule

The Season 2020: Cheltenham Festival introduces new social hotspot, The Park

Special Feature

Sporting legends gather in Cheltenham’s new VIP hotspot, The Green Room

The Boat Race (30th March)

The Boat Race is an annual contest between two rowing crews from Oxford and Cambridge universities. The famous Race takes place on the River Thames in West London between Putney and Mortlake.

The Season starts with The Boat Race

The Boat Race


The Grand National at Aintree (11th – 13th April)

Ladies Day will take place on Friday beforehand and it is then followed by Grand National Day. This legendary racing fixture is the first key horse racing event of The Season. It is not to be missed and promises an incredible day out for all visitors making the trip to the world famous racecourse.

The Season begins with the Grand National

The Grand National

Special Feature

Read our exclusive interview with the highest place lady in Grand National history

Looking Back

The 2016 Crabbies Grand National Weights Luncheon 

Salon Privé London (18th – 20th April)

Salon Privé London was brand new in 2022 and the UK’s most exclusive luxury motor show returns this year.

At the heart of the event is the unique Concours de Vente, a groundbreaking concept that will feature 60 of the finest automotive classics – all of which will be for sale. The cars will be entered by some of the most respected specialist dealers from across the UK and continental Europe. Elsewhere at Salon Privé London, upwards of 150 cars from the world’s greatest manufacturers will be on display. Among them will be the latest models from Bugatti, Lamborghini and Maserati, which will be represented by their prestigious London-based retailer HR Owen.

The shopping village will host luxury fashion brands including renowned British jewellery designer Boodles. Everything from Patek Philippe watches to Riva motor boats and Bell helicopters will be on offer, as will the first-class hospitality for which Salon Privé has long been renowned. Pommery Champagne will flow and London Essence cocktail bars will offer exciting cocktails from NoMad, Louie and the Donovan Bar mixologists.


The Season 2022: A successful debut for Salon Prive London

– MAY –

Royal Windsor Horse Show (1st – 5th May)

This prestigious horse show takes place in the Queen’s back garden at Windsor Castle. It presents International Jumping, Dressage, Showing and Driving.

Badminton Horse Trials (8th – 12th May)

Returning to the equestrian theme, Badminton Horse Trials is arguably the world’s top three day event and a welcome addition to The Season. It takes place in the Cotwolds and is often frequented by the members of the Royal family. This event is not just for equestrian fans and many people attend so they can visit the fantastic shopping village, which offers every countryside product you can imagine.

Zara Phillips competing at Badminton Horse Trials

Zara Phillips competing at Badminton Horse Trials


Badminton Horse Trials Trot Up 2022: The Fashion Report

The Season 2022: Badminton Horse Trials Shopping Village Preview

Special Features

What to wear to Badminton Horse Trials

Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials 2019 Style File

Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials Trot Up: The Fashion Report

Looking Back

The Mitsubusi Motors Badminton Horse Trials 2018

Badminton Horse Trials 2016

Badminton Horse Trials: The Trot Up Report

Glyndebourne (16th May – 25th August)

Glyndebourne is a famous opera house in East Sussex. It is just one hour from London and has been the venue for the annual Glyndebourne Festival since 1934. This year, the performances begin from the 16th of May and run throughout the summer.

Chelsea Flower Show (21st – 25th May)

The RHS Chelsea Flower Show is another world-famous event and has always formed part of The Season. The Private Viewing day is packed with London’s high society. The event is normally visited by notable guests throughout its duration.

HM The Queen at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2022


RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2022: The Social Diary 

The Season 2022: Glorious floral displays dazzle visitors in the RHS Chelsea Flower Show Great Pavilion

Special Feature

What to wear to the RHS Chelsea Flower Show

Looking Back

The Duchess of Cambridge introduces her garden to the Queen at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show

Chelsea Flower Show 2018: Garden and floral highlights

Famous faces gather for the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2018

Browse the Social Diary from Chelsea Flower Show 2014

Watch our film: A day at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show

– JUNE –

Nevill Holt Opera (1st – 26th June)

Nevill Holt Opera is extended this year due to its great success. Hosted in the grounds that belong to David Ross – the founder of Carphone Warehouse – it is considered to be a highly sophisticated occasion in stunning surroundings.

The Nevill Holt Opera

The Nevill Holt Opera


Only for 2023, a special gala evening is also planned

Looking Back

The Nevill Holt Opera Festival continues to impress

The Derby (1st June)

One of the highlights of the summer racing season, The Derby at Epsom racecourse is not to be missed. It attracts high society and a number of celebrities. It is considered one of the best flat races in the world and the fashion is also just as important as the racing.

Chestertons Polo in the Park (7th-9th June)

Polo in the Park takes place in Hurlingham Park and is a popular day out for those enjoying the British Summer Social Season. Most guests make a beeline for the Champagne Lanson Garden or Mahiki Bar. Both are located in sunny spots and offer great views of the action.

Polo in the Park

Polo in the Park takes place in central London at the Hurlingham Park


Chestertons Polo in the Park 2020 Super Early Bird Tickets

Special Feature

What to wear to Polo in the Park

Gloucestershire Festive of Polo (TBC)

An event that has previously been supported by the Royal Family, this polo tournament takes place annually at the Beaufort Polo Club. There is also a country fair that runs during the event.

Cartier Queen’s Cup (TBC)

The Finals Day is the highlight of this high-goal polo competition. The event boasts a unique blend of glamour, style and elegance in a beautiful setting.

Tennis Championships at Queen’s Club (15th – 23rd June)

This event has been staged at The Queen’s Club for more than a century. The grass courts have been described as “the best in the world” by former champions Andy Roddick, Lleyton Hewitt and Andy Murray. You are likely to spot Queen’s Club member Pippa Middleton in the crowd on most days.

 Looking Back

The Maggie’s Enclosure at Queen’s

Royal Ascot (18th – 22nd June)

This premier racing fixture is not to be missed and gives both ladies and gentleman the opportunity to dress up in their finest formal attire. Aside from watching some of the best flat racing in the world, the spectacular hats will also provide entertainment. Stick with tradition and enjoy a picnic in the car park, before venturing to the Royal Enclosure where you will find a plethora of champagne bars.

Looking Back

Royal Ascot 2018: Goffs London Sale starts the racing week in style before Harry and Meghan please crowds on day one

Famous gather for Royal Ascot

A box at Royal Ascot with Carol Joy London

Glastonbury Festival (26th – 30th June)

With Elton John set to headline on Sunday at Glastonbury 2023, the world-famous music festival is set to dazzle once again. It will be the final UK show of his last ever tour.

-JULY – 

Henley Royal Regatta (2nd – 7th July)

The Henley Royal Regatta is a perfect excuse to venture into the British countryside during The Season. The rowing event takes place every year on the River Thames by the town of Henley-on-Thames. It is a popular social occasion during The Season and there is a party atmosphere in the fashionable pop up bars that visit from London.

Looking Back

The Sloaney’s guide to the top social hotspots at The Henley Royal Regatta

Henley Royal Regatta Social Report

Wimbledon (1st July – 14th July)

Wimbledon needs little introduction, especially after Andy Murray’s incredible performances. This is the oldest tennis tournament in the world. It is also considered by many players to be one of the most prestigious titles to win. Celebrities flock to this event during The Season and it lasts for two weeks.

British Grand Prix (5th – 7th July)

The Formula 1 British Grand Prix takes place at Silverstone at the beginning of July. It promises an action packed weekend for those who love speed and excitement. It is a chance to see F1 on British soil and also watch some of the world’s top drivers and cars take to the track.

Gold Cup Final for the British Polo Open (TBC)

Sponsored by King Power, the tournament is regarded as one of the top three polo competitions in the world alongside the US and Argentine Opens. The Final attracts a crowd of over 10,000 who flock to our prestigious ‘Lawns’ polo grounds to watch some of the best players in the world in action in the heart of the South Downs National Park.

The event provides a relaxed family centric atmosphere, retaining a quintessentially British style, with a full programme of events and entertainment including a traditional fairground, carefully selected artisan food and beverage, an extensive luxury retail village and an eclectic mix of live bands and DJ’s in the evening following the polo.

The Game Fair (26th-28th July)

A mecca for those who love countryside pursuits, The Game Fair is billed as the top annual event for those who are passionate about countryside living.

Cowes Week (27th July – 2nd August)

Cowes Week is one of the longest-running regular regattas in the world. Over 8,000 competitors take part and the event features many drinks parties and a famous fireworks display.


Qatar Goodwood Festival (30th July – 3rd August)

This year ‘Glorious Goodwood’ promises great action on the track and an even better social scene. Taking place in the middle of summer, this is a highlight of The Season.

Special Feature

The Gallop to Goodwood – The Sloaney’s Editor rides in the famous race

Special Feature

The Sloaney’s Guide to Goodwood

Looking Back

Goodwood welcomes a rose bar for 2016, partnering with Château La Gordonne

Salon Prive (28th -31st August)

For those of you that haven’t experienced Salon Privé before, it is a motor show unlike any other. It is a unique 3-day event held in the spectacular grounds of Blenheim Palace showcasing an incredible collection of classic, super, hyper and concept cars for a true celebration of these motoring masterpieces.

Looking Back

The Salon Prive Gala Ball


Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials (5th – 8th September)

One of the top 5* equestrian events in the world, Burghley is acknowledged globally by leading riders as an ultimate competitive goal. The Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials attracts fantastic crowds to witness exhilarating equestrian action. You can also browse the world-renowned shopping avenues and enjoying the many other attractions in a truly stunning location.

BMW PGA, Wentworth (17th – 22nd September)

Top golfers consider it to be like a Championship and the Wentworth PGA is one of the biggest tournaments in the world.

The LAPADA Art & Antiques Fair (TBC)

The LAPADA Art & Antiques Fair takes place in Berkeley Square, Mayfair, London and brings our guide to The Season to an end. This is Autumn’s must-visit event for sourcing and buying fine art and antiques. It has quickly become a highlight on the social calender and last year there were over 19,000 visitors from around the world.

The LAPADA Art & Antiques Fair

The LAPADA Art & Antiques Fair


“I really appreciate the coverage about our Henley party. We have seen quite the jump in tickets sales since you published it.”  – The Champagne Cocktail Club at Henley Royal Regatta 

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