THOUSANDS of Cartmel racegoers were treated to a musical showcase when '80s supergroup Simply Red took to the stage at the first meeting of the year.

The band had fans of all ages dancing and singing along to old favourites at a super-charged open-air concert that proved to be a great success in the glorious sunshine.

People had bought combined tickets for a day at the races, followed by the concert, and many families brought picnics and made a day of it.

Lead singer Mick Hucknall said he was delighted to be playing at Cartmel as he fondly remembered his father, who hails from Barrow, attending race meetings in the village when he was a child.

Simply Red played a two-hour set and crammed in many of their best loved tunes including Money's Too Tight to Mention, Stars, Holding Back the Years and Something Got Me Started.

Jonathan Garratt, Cartmel Racecourse’s managing director, said: “It has been a whole new experience for our team, who have worked non-stop to ensure that horse owners and trainers and concert visitors all have an enjoyable experience and the weather has been wonderful.”

For the first time at a race meeting, visitors were also able to cross over from the course enclosure to the paddock to check out the form of the horses before placing their bets.

On Sunday evening, with no racing during the day, it was the turn of Jools Holland and his Rhythm & Blues Orchestra to take to the stage for an evening of blues and jazz numbers.