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What's on & the Essex Big Weekend

By Shannon Lynch - 30 January 2018

Are you ready to get your tickets to the biggest celebration of the year?

Registration for the 2nd Visit Essex Big Weekend opens on 8th February, where hundreds of FREE pairs of tickets for a host of attractions and fun-filled activities across the county, will be up for grabs via an on-line ballot.

A huge variety of Essex tourist attractions and related businesses will be opening their doors free of charge, or offering special gifts to lucky ticket holders on 24th and 25th March, as part of Visit Essex’s second celebration of the county’s tourism industry.

Some of the county’s biggest attractions have already signed up to this year’s event, including Barleylands, Chelmsford City Racecourse, Lifehouse Spa Hotel, Marks Hall Gardens and Arboretum,  Redwings Horse Sanctuary and Hedingham Castle, to name a few.

Experiences on offer include entrance to stunning stately homes, gardens and thrilling white water or high wire experiences. Don’t miss out, register your interest here NOW:  Essex residents can apply for as many tickets as they like, but there will be a limit of two winning tickets per household.

There’s still time for more tourism attractions or related business to get involved in the celebrations too by offering extra tickets – make sure you contact the Visit Essex team by 12th January to be included. Contact

Or register here:

Essex Big Weekend was set up to promote Essex’s incredible attractions and sights, and to encourage residents to discover how much there is to see and do on their doorstep. The event is also part of English Tourism Week

(, which highlights the importance of tourism as one of the fastest growing sectors in the national economy.

The Ballot opens on 8th February – 12th March. Two tickets per household will then be allocated at random by ballot (some family tickets are available).

Whilst you wait here are our highlights of things to do in the area over the next couple of weeks.

  • The Laughter Zone Comedy Club, Colchester Arts Centre, 2nd February

The place to be for Stand-Up Comedy. We get all the new comics on their way up! Eddie Izzard, Michael McIntyre, Bill Bailey, Jimmy Carr all appeared at the arts centre before they were famous (and in some cases afterwards as well).

For more information click here

  • Cheeki Monkeys Baby & Children Indoor Market, Braintree, 3rd Feb

The place where "Smart Parents" shop! Buy & sell maternity, babies' & children’s toys, clothes & equipment and many more. There is a playground area adjacent to the venue building with a local family friendly pub nearby. The majority of the stallholders will be offering their pre-loved goods for sale; complimented by craft stalls offering handmade and unique products and local business stalls.

For more information click here

  • Tom Jones Tribute, Maldon Town Football Club, 9th February

Join Martin Jarvis as Tom Jones at the Maldon Stadium for a night of entertainment. The performance will include the best Tom Jones songs from the past six decades.

For more information click here

  • Comedy Club 4 Kids, Chelmsford, 10th February

The show is family friendly, but without any patronising idiocy. In fact, it's just like a normal comedy club, but it's on in the day, kids are allowed in, and thus there is a higher than usual chance of heckles like "why is that your face!?"

For more information click here

  • Spice Girls Tribute, Colchester, 16th February

Girl Power! Bringing the 1990’s back to life, our Spice girl’s tribute will “Spice Up Your Life!” So “Say You’ll Be There!”
Entry ticket only £18.00
Entry with a two course meal £31.00

For more information click here