BAKERY boss John Carr and his wife Moira will be among racing fanatics near the finishing line of the Cheltenham Gold Cup today — thanks to their big-hearted staff and customers.

Workers at Carrs Pasties and its outlets around Bolton have had a whip round to give managing director Mr Carr, who turned 70 in October, a belated gift of a trip to the Cotswolds.

Bakery supervisor Bridget Markey came up the idea as a way of saying thank you to Mr Carr “for being a fantastic boss”.

She said: “We knew he has always loved Cheltenham and it seemed like the perfect present.

“But it wasn’t just the staff at the main bakery in Manchester Road who contributed. All the people in the shops, many customers and suppliers also chipped in.

“It just shows what everyone thinks of him.”

Mr and Mrs Carr set off to the races yesterday and stayed in a top hotel before enjoying the best spectators’ position at Cheltenham.

Mr Carr, whose father Joseph Edward founded the company in the 1940s, said: “I couldn’t believe it when they told me what they had done.

“It’s a magnificent gesture. I’ve always wanted to go, but we’ve always been too busy at the bakery. But I am semi-retired now and there is no reason why we couldn’t go.”

Mr Carr was keeping tight-lipped about which horse he would put a bet on, but is hoping an Irish horse comes home first.

He added: “We have Irish in our family, so I would like one of them to win. Whatever happens, we’re going to have great time.”

More than 50 people work for Carrs and the next generation — Mr Carr’s sons Liam and Joseph — are also key men in the Manchester Road set-up.