Antonia Stratford
10th October 2023

The Big Weekend was held in Essex for the third time last weekend (6th - 8th October) and it was bigger and better than ever before with over 7,000 local residents bidding for the chance to win a short break or free tickets to a top attraction.

Nearly 60 local tourism and hospitality businesses took part such as the ‘Upside Down House’ at Lakeside, the Stow Maries Great War Aerodrome near Maldon, Meadow Oak Distillery and the Saffron Walden food tour, which takes in top eateries around the historic town.  Other key attractions in the county also took part such as Colchester Zoo, Hedingham Castle, Marks Hall Estate, Audley End Miniature Railway and Escape Live.

A number of short breaks were also on offer such as staying at a luxurious cabin at Lee Valley, an overnight stay with dinner and breakfast at the award -winning Camelia Hotel along the coast or the rural Great Sampford B&B.

Cllr Mark Durham, Chair, Visit Essex, said: “Essex has so many things to see and do, not just during the summer months, but throughout the year. The Big Weekend was a wonderful opportunity to highlight the wide range of visitor attractions and top stays that Essex offers.”

Deirdre Wells OBE, CEO of GO To Places said: "We are very pleased that Essex decided to run the Big Weekend for a third time and their hard work and promotion of the initiative has really paid off as we saw a record number of businesses and people taking part.  The Big Weekend is a fantastic way to promote attractions and activities that local residents might not otherwise be aware of and it can play a key role in helping to spread the benefits of tourism well into the Autumn months."   

If your destination would like to find out more about how to run a Big Weekend - get in touch with the team!