What’s on – Best Family friendly events in 2017 UK

The point of our bucket list is to not only cross off things that we have done but to inspire ourselves to do things that we’ve not yet done with Jamie, or even ourselves. When I typed into Google ‘Best Family friendly events in 2017 UK’ and ‘What’s on 2017’ nothing relevant seemed to crop up. So I did some research myself and I hope this post will help not only inspire you but guide you as to what’s on in 2017.

Air shows

We love a good air show. There is a fabulous website for the full UK 2017 calendar of events. We will be going to what is set to be the biggest and main RAF show in the UK airshow calendar. Which will be at Scampton in Lincolnshire. The red arrows will be the main draw for the show.

What's on - Best Family friendly events in 2017 UK


There’s nothing like the wonderment in a child at the circus. The sights, the sounds, the smells. It’s so magical and it is something I hope we can do at least once a year as a family. For me I love it when the circus comes to town and where we live in Lincolnshire there’s usually a travelling circus nearby like Russells circus. If you aren’t lucky enough to have a big top nearby why not check out this link for circus events at the theatre around the UK.

What's on - Best Family friendly events in 2017 UK

County fairs

We love a good county fair. Lincoln is our closest major fair and it was a great day out for us last year. Especially as the dancing diggers (JCB) were there and they had some lovely old fashioned fairground rides. There’s usually loads on to keep the little ones entertained with displays and of course animals.

Best things to do 2017 children UK, kids what's on

Fairs and carnivals

At some point of the year a fair with fairground rides will come to a town or city near you. There’s no one resource for what’s on and where. I’ve never been myself but I hope to take Jamie to the Goose fair in Nottingham one day. It’s one of the UK’s biggest and best fairs.

What's on best Family friendly events 2017 UK

Family friendly festivals

If I had have planned our year a bit better we would have been heading to a kids festival in the East Midlands. The Gloworm festival looks to be a great day or weekend out for all and as it’s only in it’s 2nd year I feel it deserves a mention here. I was surprised to see it wasn’t even listed on the family friendly festivals website. This is a great resource for what’s on. Another festival worth looking at looks to be the Green Meadows festival near Peterborough. On our bucket list we have specifically listed The Cambridge folk festival. With loads on for the children it sounds like a perfect weekend away. Hopefully we will manage to try out a festival somewhere this year.

Gruffalo Spotters trail

There’s at least 28 Gruffalo spotter trails being run across the country by the Forestry commission this year. Launch dates vary between forests. There is an app to download and clues to follow. There is an activity kit that you can purchase for £3 from the café or visitor centre of participating forests.

Meet a Character

Paw patrol, Peppa pig, The Gruffalo, Bing, Thomas, Fireman Sam….. the list goes on. If your kid loves a certain character you can probably find a farm or other child friendly place nearby with a meet and great on. This years request from Jamie is to meet Paw Patrol. Hopefully there will be an event on when we aren’t away. Last year we met The Gruffalo over at White post farm.

The races

A day at the races. I remember going as a young child and enjoying the thrill of the race. While I didn’t, and probably shouldn’t have, understood about betting it was always a day out to be remembered. This year we will be taking Jamie to the races for the first time at Ascot, near Windsor. I’ve never been there myself. There are many different race events across the country. Click here for a list of all the Major race dates of 2017.


From Jousting to the English civil war, from Vikings to the War of the roses. There’s so many different societies I can’t possibly list them all. If you’re interested in a specific one then Google will certainly help. Reenactment days are a great day out for all and can teach your kids all about history at the same time. If you would like anything specifically mentioning or reviewing please contact me. A good starting point would be to click here. Or to look at the websites for The Sealed knot, The Knights of Nottingham, War of the roses, Vikings of middle England, The Vikings and The American civil war society.

Steam trains

And more importantly a ride on Thomas the tank engine. Let’s keep steam engines alive and running. We make sure we go every year to a steam train event. There’s so many happening across the country. It doesn’t just have to be a ride on Thomas. The magic is still there for kids no matter what. I have found a great resource for steam train events across the UK. Please click here. Or here for a Day out with Thomas. This isn’t the only website where you can find Thomas steam train events. Many railways across the country have Thomas engines. Our favourite is over at Nene Valley, Lincolnshire. A lot of these places also have Santa specials in December.


I’ve always loved the theatre and luckily Jamie shares my love too. We already have four shows booked for this year. I have scoured the internet and the major child friendly theatre tours of 2017 are as follows, if I have missed any please let me know:

Babe – The tour started on the 3rd March and finishes on the 10th September, stopping at 37 different theatres

Ben and Holly – Started March 4th and runs until 23rd July. 39 different theatres, stopping for two nights at each theatre

Sarah and Duck – Starts on the 1st April and finishes on the 9th July. Stopping at 28 different theatres.

Sooty Show – The tour started on the 14th February and finishes on the 10th June. Stopping at 30 different theatres

Click here for a great list of what’s on in the theatre world. And of course there are numerous pantomimes across the country in December/January.

Ben and Holly's little kingdom

Some images are my own, others have been sourced from Pixabay.com or from the websites mentioned above.

Please contact me if you know of a major event that could be included here.

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What's on best Family friendly events 2017 UK

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  1. You are so nice! Thanks for sharing! You give us so many lists of great selections!
    I love everyone you share!
    I am a fan of travelling everywhere and I would like to have a try after I reading your post!

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