Incorporate contactless giving into your school holidays: Part 1

The school holidays are here, and you know what that means—energetic kids bouncing off the walls, eagerly awaiting new adventures. It's the perfect time to keep them entertained, engaged, and also teach them the importance of giving back to the community.

Written by Emma Rose August 7, 2023

Did you know that many popular visitor attractions are also charities? Here is a selection of some fantastic places to visit where you can also make a contactless donation through Give A Little, to help them with their important work.

So, let's explore some venues and activities that will keep the little ones happy

The Eden Project
, Cornwall

If you’re lucky enough to be visiting beautiful  Cornwall, then Eden Project is a must.

Explore massive covered Biomes to trek through the world’s largest indoor rainforest and immerse yourself in the calm fragrance of the Mediterranean Biome. Enjoy extensive Outdoor Gardens, contemporary artworks, performance and storytelling. 

This summer, they’ve unveiled a spectacular new natural adventure play area in their Outdoor Gardens, brimming with imaginative, sensory play. You will need to book a slot to visit.  

And whilst you’re there, don’t forget to make a contactless donation enabling the Eden Trust to promote public education and research in flora, fauna & other aspects of the natural world. Read more about how Give A Little is partnering with The Eden Project.

London Zoo
, Outer Circle, Regent's Park, London

You can’t visit the capital without a trip to the iconic London Zoo! 

You can see a host of amazing animals from tiny marching leafcutter ants to a giant 193kg silverback gorilla.

London Zoo is part of ZSL (The Zoological Society of London), an international science-driven conservation charity, working to restore wildlife in the UK and around the world. Their teams of conservationists, scientists, technicians and community specialists are active in over 70 countries - and every visit to London Zoo helps fund their vital work to restore habitats and protect wildlife.

You’ll find donation points when viewing the gorillas, lions, penguins and tigers. 

Whipsnade Zoo
, Whipsnade, Dunstable

Also part of ZSL, Whipsnade is the UK's biggest zoo.  Set in 600 acres of beautiful parkland on the Chiltern Hills, north of London, the Zoo is home to more than 10,000 animals, many of which are endangered in the wild. 

You can make donations next to the butterflies, elephants and giraffes. Read more about our work with London and Whipsnade zoos.

Cressing Temple Barns
, Witham Road, Braintree, Cressing, Essex

Granted to the Knights Templar in 1137, Cressing Temple Barns is of significant historic interest for its unique buildings and garden. Internationally renowned for its impressive and remarkably well preserved medieval carpentry, the barns attract visitors from around the world, providing them with a remarkable insight into the building techniques of the time and a glimpse into the lives of the people who built them. The Grade I listed Barley and Wheat Barns are the oldest known timber framed barns and amongst the few remaining Templar buildings in England.

Nestled in the grounds, the walled garden has been faithfully recreated as a Tudor pleasure garden. A place of beauty and tranquillity, sure to delight anyone with an interest in horticulture or history, and perfect for young children to run, jump and hide!

And you can’t visit without a special cream tea in the Tiptree Tea Room!

The Bluebell Railway
, Sussex

The Bluebell Railway was one of the first preserved heritage lines in the country commencing train services in August 1960. As a result, they have one of the finest collections of vintage steam locomotives and carriages, many of which were preserved straight out of service from British Railways.

You can take a 3 ½ hour journey on a steam locomotive and also visit the museum at Sheffield Park station, plus there’s also another opportunity for a cream tea! 

The railway is funded by donations from members and friends together with public support, so don’t forget your contactless donation whilst there.

Southwark Cathedral
London Bridge, London

Situated on the south bank of the River Thames, Southwark Cathedral is an extraordinary building to explore.

As well as admiring the architecture you can visit the churchyard and herb gardens, complete the Shakespearean Botanical Trail and see the life size bronze statue of William Shakespeare in the area where he would have sat when he was a resident in the parish.  They regularly host exhibitions and installations and events throughout the year. You’ll also need to visit if you’re taking part in Morph’s Epic Art Adventure in London as one of the 56 lifesize 56 super-sized sculptures  can be found in the courtyard.

If you’re lucky you might spot Hodge the cathedral cat and you can even donate to his own fundraising appeal!

Wetwheels South East
Port of Dover

Wetwheels South East gives everyone the opportunity to access the water in a safe, barrier-free enriching environment. A unique opportunity for those with multiple, profound and complex disabilities through to those with hidden neurodiverse disabilities. Their aim is to leave disabilities at the dockside, and everyone has the opportunity to helm our boat.

Everybody is welcome aboard on one of their trips of which there are many to choose including guided seal watching, a Dover harbour tour, fishing trips and watching the sun go down. If there’s a big group of you, you can arrange bespoke experiences. 

It’s all run by volunteers so if you can, be generous and donate before you leave.

Guildhall Art Gallery
, Basinghall St, London

Established in the late 19th century as a collection of art treasures worthy of the capital city, Guildhall Art Gallery soon lived up to this ambition, with exhibitions that featured world famous masterpieces and works by some great artists. The wide-ranging collection of 4,500 works, including over 1,300 oil paintings, dates from 1670 to the present day. Particularly strong in Victorian material, with a number of choice Pre-Raphaelite items, the collection also houses important ceremonial and topographical paintings.

They run free guided tours, on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Find out how about Guildhall Art Gallery's Pay What you Can Scheme in our recent case study.

St. Albans Museum and Gallery
, St Peter’s Street., St Albans

Set over three floors, the newly created state-of-the-art gallery spaces showcase over 2,000 years of priceless heritage and display contemporary artworks – sharing local, national and world treasures..

Enjoy regularly changing exhibitions and cutting edge art installations, take part in the vibrant programme of events, and explore the fascinating histories of the Town Hall, its Assembly Room, Courtroom and Cells.

There's also a gift shop and cafe on site. Another one that's free to enter, but you’ll find donation points dotted around the exhibitions.

Lady Waterford Hall Trust
, Ford Village, Berwick-upon-Tweed

Lady Waterford Hall, a  Victorian ‘model’ village’s school room is home to a series of astounding  Pre-Raphaelite murals and is the perfect place to bring all the family!

Children can discover more about the Hall with their Animal Explorers trail and learn about the life of Victorian schoolchildren.

They have a lovely outdoor space perfect for picnics, and have something for every age with fun for all the family. They’re also dog-friendly. It’s also part of Ford & Etal Estates which lie in the valley of the River Till, just a few miles inland from Holy Island and Bamburgh, close to the Scottish border. There are no entrance charges, but donations are welcome.

There are lots more lovely places to visit where you can find contactless donation devices that use Give A Little software - if you spot one during your summer staycation, why not take a photo send it to us at

We will be posting part 2 of this series soon, so keep an eye out on our social channels for more school holiday inspiration!

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