Registration for this year’s Big Weekend (12th and 13th March 2016) opened in January and there have been a whopping 91,338 entries so far.
A total of 119 Kent tourist attractions and businesses have donated tickets to Visit Kent’s annual celebration of the county’s tourism industry, and Kent residents are invited to bid for the thousands of fun-filled activities on offer. But hurry – the ballot at www.kentbigweekend.co.uk closes on Sunday 14th February!
So far Kent’s exotic residents and regal residences have attracted the most interest, with Wingham Wildlife Park, Port Lympne Reserve, Howletts Wild Animal Park, Leeds Castle and Hever Castle attracting the most bids to date.
But there are scores of interesting and alternative tickets up for grabs, including more than 20 newcomers for 2016, including:
- Betteshanger Country Park
- Dreamland Margate
- Jetstream Tours, Medway
- Wildwood Trust, Herne Bay
- Monkton Nature Reserve
- Rose St Cottage of Curiosities, Sheerness
- The Scramble Experience at National Memorial to the Few, Capel-le-Ferne
- The Old Dairy Brewery, Tenterden
- Pugin’s Church and Shrine of St Augustine, Ramsgate
- Revolution Skatepark and Climbing Centre
- Singleton Environment Centre
- Tonbridge River Trips
Experiences on offer include activities for animal lovers, museum tours, brewery and vineyard tours and tastings, jet skiing or scuba diving tasters, rounds of golf, greyhound racing, cricket match tickets, pottery classes and ceramic art, river tours, railway adventures, and shopping experiences.
And as this is Kent Big Weekend’s 10th birthday, there will be extra prizes up for grabs for ticket holders on 12th and 13th March…
Kent residents can apply for as many tickets as they like at www.kentbigweekend.co.uk until 14th February.
Two tickets will then be allocated per household by ballot (some family tickets are available).
.Visit Kent chief executive Sandra Matthews-Marsh MBE said: “Kent Big Weekend is all about encouraging residents to get out and about to discover – or rediscover – the wonderful things to see and do in their home county, and to spread the word about just how much Kent has to offer.
“There is an attraction for everyone so there is no excuse to not sign up and take advantage of the amazing offers available this year
“Since we launched this event in 2007, attractions have donated more and more tickets each year and we now have a record-breaking number of activities to share with Kent residents in 2016.”
Other attractions participating in Kent Big Weekend 2016 include Canterbury Cathedral, Ashford Designer Outlet, The Canterbury Tales, Quex Park, Penshurst Place & Gardens, Rochester Castle, Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch Railway, Dover Castle, Tonbridge Castle, Brogdale Collections, Turner Contemporary, The Historic Dockyard Chatham, Buckmore Park Karting Ltd, Riverhill Himalayan Gardens, Lullingstone Roman Villa, Ightham Mote, Knole, and Chapel Down, Biddenden and Hush Heath vineyards.
More than 4,000 additional tickets have also been donated by attractions to the event’s chosen charity, The Family Holiday Association – double the amount donated last year.
Kent Big Weekend was set up to promote Kent’s incredible attractions and sights, and to encourage residents to discover how much there is to see and do in their home county. The event is also part of English Tourism Week (www.visitengland.com/biz/about-us/campaigns-and-opportunities/english-tourism-week), which highlights the importance of tourism as one of the fastest growing sectors in the national economy.
Last year more than 105,000 people applied for 20,156 free tickets via the Big Weekend website.
For more information about Kent, please visit www.visitkent.co.uk