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Kent Big Weekend: 161,000 already applied for free ticket giveaway - deadline for applications is this Friday, March 3

PUBLISHED: 10:09 28 February 2017 | UPDATED: 10:09 28 February 2017

See the lions at Kent's wildlife parks for free

See the lions at Kent's wildlife parks for free

Byrdyak

Have you applied yet for a chance of freebies to one of the county’s top tourist attractions?

The opportunity to grab free tickets for Kent’s top tourist attractions closes this Friday, March 3.

Kent’s Big Weekend has become an annual event organised by tourism champions Visit Kent and designed at highlighting the array of attractions on our doorstep.

In exchange for free tickets, it is hoped word of mouth then spreads throughout the year and the venues get big crowds just as the season is beginning.

The 11th weekend runs across April 1 and 2.

To apply for tickets - and see the range of venues taking part - visit www.kentbigweekend.co.uk.

So far 161,444 entries have been made.

Among those venues offering free tickets are Port Lympne, Howletts, Wingham Wildlife Park, Hever Castle, Rochester Cathedral, Kent Life, Canterbury Cathedral and Leeds Castle.

If there are too many applications for particular venues, then names are drawn randomly from a hat. The most tickets allocated per household will be two - although some family tickets are also available.

A total of 112 Kent tourist attractions and businesses have donated tickets.

Experiences on offer include close encounters for animal lovers, brewery and vineyard tours and tastings, high speed boat rides, rounds of golf, greyhound racing, family activities, river tours, railway adventures, and shopping experiences.

There will also be extra prizes up for grabs for ticket holders over the course of the weekend.

Kent residents can apply for as many tickets as they like until Friday.

Visit Kent head of marketing, Sinead Hanna, said: “The Big Weekend marks the beginning of the tourist season and is a fantastic way to celebrate all that is on offer in Kent.

“Over the last decade Kent’s Big Weekend has given our residents some brilliant opportunities to discover what’s happening in their home county and this year is no different.

“We’ve once again been overwhelmed by the support from attractions across Kent and the range of visitor experiences on offer, and we encourage all Kent residents to rediscover the amazing things to see and do in their county.

“And if you have a good time during the Big Weekend, don’t forget to share your stories and pictures on social media using #kentbigweekend17.”

Some attractions have also donated extra tickets to the Family Holiday Association charity, which helps struggling families to enjoy a day out for free.

The event is run as part of English Tourism Week, which highlights tourism as one of the fastest growing sectors in the national economy. Last year, more than 120,000 people applied for tickets to the big event.

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