Booking ahead will no longer be needed at Washington Wetland Centre

Advance bookings will no longer be necessary at Washington Wetland Centre from Monday, September 6.

The 103-acre site reopened on April 12 following lockdown and has been an absorbing attraction for families throughout the school holidays, but with pre-booking a must.

Now, in another step towards normality, the site is to allow “spontaneous days” whereby visitors can once again turn up and pay for admission at the door.

However, anyone wishing to book a visit in advance can still do so online; and anyone who has already booked for September 6 or after does not need to rearrange their plans.

Youngsters love hand-feeding the birds at Washington Wetland Centre.

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    The wildlife sanctuary still has measures in place to combat covid, so that the public feel safe and comfortable. The centre retains VisitBritain’s “We’re Good To Go” stamp of approval; the official UK mark to say that a tourism and hospitality business is strictly following Government guidelines on coronavirus.

    September is a particularly interesting month for bird lovers, with species returning to Washington to spend the winter there.

    This includes the arrival of the black-tailed godwit, knot and various sandpipers. Snipe, whimbrel and other waders will drop in to “refuel” as they migrate to faraway lands, and the occasional skein of geese will be seen.

    Chilean flamingos remain a highlight, while non-flying residents include Asian short-clawed otters.


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    Advance bookings can still be made from September 6, but are no longer mandatory.

    Washington Wetland Centre manager, Gill Pipes, said: “We’re so happy to be able to announce that spontaneous days out at our wonderful wetlands are back.

    “We’d like to thank everyone who has supported us during the challenges of the last few months. We couldn’t have got through it without your cooperation and your continued visits. It has meant such a lot to the team and we look forward to welcoming you for a fantastic day out soon.”

    Members, essential carers and children who are under-four years old can enter the centre for free.


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    Admission for adult using Gift Aid is £11.15 (£10.13 is the standard admission), child Gift Aid is £6.40 (£5.81 standard), concession Gift Aid £9.50 (£8.63 standard), family (two adults and two children) Gift Aid £29.80 (£27.09 standard).

    For more information, visit

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