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Things To Do On A Low Budget With The Family

The Best Free Things To Do, This Sunny Weekend

Can't decide what to do this weekend? Here are some hints and tips!

There's always something going on to keep the family entertained, but what if you have a tight budget?

Take a look below at some of the events taking place, often for free, plus a selection of the best places to visit for a free day out, such as free museums (I also recommend the Natural History Museum,(definitely the best museum in my experience!), British Museum, Science Museum, National Gallery, National Maritime Museum, Imperial War Museum and the Victoria & Albert Museum if you're visiting Central London, you'll find highly recommended places to visit and free events throughout the United Kingdom, not just in the City Of London!


Visit England

A great online visitor centre for finding things to do locally and nationally is the Visit England website; this is a great place to go for a wealth of information on finding the best free things you can do or those that come with an extra cost. You'll find all sorts of cool places mentioned that you might enjoy visiting, such as a nature reserve, any special exhibitions, perhaps a film screening, a free walking tour, exploring green spaces, visiting a historic site; maybe a royal park or national park and they will advise on visitor amenities and public transport availability.

There is also Visit Wales, Visit Scotland & Visit Northern Ireland if you aren't in England


Kids Theatre Week

Kids Theatre week, where a child aged 17 and under go free to a performance when accompanied by an adult paying full price, plus an additional two children can attend for half price in the week starting August 14th; however, tickets go on sale at 10 am on Tuesday 13 June, so if this is something you'd like to attend, which is during the Kids School summer holidays, pop that date in your diary, as the tickets go really fast! There are also lots of activities for the kids to meet the cast and get involved in demonstrations, get up close to musical instruments and the people that play them, live music and Q&A's so it's a great event for those with an interest in the performing arts.


RAF Museum

The RAF museum in London and in Cosford offers free entrance in June (need to prebook your tickets online, where you can explore the history of the RAF, check out real planes and exhibits and even use the flight simulators!

The RAF museum in London and in Cosford offers free entrance in June (need to prebook your tickets online, where you can explore the history of the RAF, check out real planes and exhibits and even use the flight simulators!

There's the new Bomber Command Exhibition at both sites where visitors can explore and engage with stories of the crew, technology and raids that were crucial to Allied victory in the Second World War. As well as iconic aircraft, they will be exhibiting objects from our archives which will reveal the real stories of the real people involved.

The Cosford RAF museum meanwhile boasts a renowned collection of military aircraft, including the world’s oldest Spitfire, as well as Britain’s V Bombers from the Cold War era, including the Vulcan, Victor and Valiant. Also on display is a Dornier Do 17, a German bomber recovered from the bottom of the English Channel a decade ago.

You can book online for free and see what's going on via the RAF Museum website


Which? has revealed the UK’s best-rated museums, galleries, cathedrals, and historic sites that offer free admission.

The consumer champion surveyed almost 7,000 people, asking them to rate their experiences at more than one hundred museums, galleries and historic attractions.

Which? surveyed 2,944 members of its online panel in May 2022 to review some of the UK’s historic attractions and 4,283 members in March 2020 to review some of the UK’s museums and galleries. This press release includes attractions, museums and galleries that are free. In the museum's category, over 4,000 people offered their assessments of their favourite destinations, ranking each location on its engagement and entertainment factor, the quality of the information provided, queueing times and crowdedness, range and quality of facilities and value for money.

The top-rated, free attraction is Cardiff’s St Fagans National Museum of History, with a stellar customer score of 94 per cent. This open-air museum offers a fascinating glimpse into history, with forty reconstructed buildings, including a working forge, a school, a chapel and Workmen’s Institute for visitors to explore. Many of the buildings also have practical exhibits for visitors to enjoy, including demonstrations of blacksmithing, pottery and weaving.

Close behind, with tied customer scores of 91 per cent, are the National Railway Museum in York and the Royal Air Force (RAF) Museum in Cosford.

The National Railway Museum is the largest of its kind in the world, featuring a collection of more than a hundred locomotives. These include the fastest-ever steam engine, the Mallard, a working replica of George Stephenson’s Rocket, and the only Shinkansen bullet train outside of Japan.

Among the other highly-rated best museums and galleries in the consumer champion’s survey is the National Museum of Scotland, with a customer score of 90 per cent, the Cardiff National Museum (87%), Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum in Glasgow (87%), Royal Air Force Museum, London (87%), Walker Art Gallery in Liverpool (87%), Oxford University Museum of Natural History (86%) and the Scottish National Galleries (86%).

The consumer champion also asked almost 3,000 people to rank their favourite historic attractions, rating them on nine criteria, including accessibility, the quality of food and drink available and lack of crowds. The highest-scoring free attraction in the consumer champion’s survey is Durham Cathedral, with a customer score of 86 per cent. Perched high above the city, it has inspired visitors since the medieval period and was once described by Bill Bryson as ‘the best cathedral on planet earth’.

St David’s Cathedral also rated highly, with a customer score of 80 per cent. Located in the UK’s smallest city, there have been services held on the site since the sixth century, and today over 300,000 people visit every year. Chichester, meanwhile, was the third highest-rated free destination, with a score of 77 per cent.

Close behind with a score of 76 per cent is the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben. While guided tours can often be costly, at around £25 a head, it is possible to gain entry for free with just a little forward planning. Any UK resident can contact their MP, or a member of the House of Lords, to request a free-75 minute guided tour. UK residents also have the right to visit Prime Minister’s Questions or other debates, again by contacting their MP.

Other highly rated free historic attractions include Bury St Edmunds Abbey, which received a customer score of 73 per cent, Somerset House (71%) and Bristol Cathedral (68%).

Rory Boland, Editor of Which? Travel said:

“As the cost of living crisis continues to be a strain on household budgets, finding cheap or free days out has never been more important. Fortunately, the UK has a number of fantastic museums, galleries and other attractions which offer free entry and hours of fun.“From the world’s largest railway museum to the Houses of Parliament, Which?’s rankings of the UK’s best free days out have plenty to inspire you as the summer holidays approach.”


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