FAMILIES of frontline and key workers can soon get their hands on free tickets to attractions including Thorpe Park as a thank you for their hard work during the coronavirus pandemic.

Merlin Entertainments is donating more than 30,000 tickets to emergency service and frontline essential support workers in the UK, across Asia, North America and Australia and New Zealand.

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Days out will be offered across a range of their UK attractions including Alton Towers, Chessington World of Adventures, LEGOLAND Windsor, Thorpe Park, The Bear Grylls Adventure and some Madame Tussauds and SEA LIFE Centres.

In the UK, the majority of the 10,000 tickets will be made available via the free platform ‘Blue Light Tickets’, a new initiative where UK frontline workers can register to secure free tickets for venues and events, with tickets donated by Merlin and other venues, stadiums, clubs, promoters and event industry experts from across the UK.

Scroll down to see who is eligible...

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Pioneered by Blue Light Card, the UK’s discount service for emergency services, NHS, social care workers and armed forces, the scheme already has a number of high-profile supporters alongside Merlin, who are donating free tickets for sporting, music and leisure days out.

NHS, social care and emergency services workers are encouraged to register for free online as soon as possible, to receive early bird access to the first round of free ticket allocations.

Will Campbell-Lamerton, partnerships and operations manager at Blue Light Tickets, said: "In these difficult times, we have been blown away by Merlin's generosity.

"We know that free tickets to leisure days out will spread the message of 'thank you' to NHS, healthcare and emergency service workers, who've shown superhero strength and dedication in recent months.

"For those who haven't been able to spend much time with their families during the COVID-19 lockdown, either as a result of long working hours or social distancing, we hope that a free day out at a Merlin resort/attraction will give some respite to those who need it most."

The Blue Light Tickets have been donated via Merlin’s dedicated charity Merlin's Magic Wand which was established by Merlin to offer support and days out for children and families facing challenges of serious illness, disability or adversity around the world.

The charity will be allocating tickets across the majority of its UK sites offering NHS, emergency workers and frontline staff a chance to take their families out for the day, spend quality time together and have some well-deserved fun.

A total of 3,000 of the tickets (which come direct from Merlin) will be split equally across 30 different companies in the UK who have seen their frontline and essential workers continue to work throughout the pandemic.

This includes:

  • Teachers via the ASCL
  • Royal Mail postal staff
  • Compass Group UK & Ireland - the UK’s largest food and support services company (who have been working in healthcare, education and defence as well as supporting key workers within business and industry sectors)
  • WHSmith (for their post office colleagues who provided vital postal and banking services on the high street and for their store colleagues across over 100 hospitals who served frontline NHS staff)
  • Council workers across the UK including refuse collectors
  • a range of the major high street supermarkets including Tesco
  • Food takeaway delivery companies*

* The full name of all businesses and further details on applying will be published in late July