Not for the faint-hearted, this interactive experience at the famously haunted Hinchingbrooke House, near Huntingdon, sees participants immersed in their own personal horror movie. Brave scary clowns, axe-wielding freaks and demonic creatures lurking in the shadows as you make your way, unguided, through dark, ancient rooms and creepy woods.
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Groups of up to 12 will be sent into this live-action scare maze for an unforgettable 45-minute encounter that’s high on thrills. Robert Gough, of Scare Events Ltd, describes it as: “a theatrical setting arranged into 13 sets and with around 25 actors lurking in the darkness. This, combined with a wide selection of sound and lighting FX, help to create an absolutely terrifying experience.” Get scared between 24 and 30 October; tickets £18.50. And visit our website after the 24th for a write-up by our intrepid features editor, Jenny. Presuming she makes it out alive, that is…
Enchanted Cinema will be setting up their outdoor screens around Cambridge this Halloween, showing a series of classic films. At The Red Lion, Grantchester on 30 October, cosy up under blankets in their heated marquee for Ghostbusters (6pm) or The Lost Boys (9pm). Make for The Cambridge Blue on Gwydir Street, 1 November, for cult zom-com Sean of the Dead, 7.30pm, then return the next day for Beetlejuice, 7.30pm. TIckets are £12.50 (£10 students). Tickets can be bought from the venues themselves, or online: www.enchantedcinema.co.uk
On 30 and 31 October, see the Corpus Playroom transformed into a bridge to the spiritual world. From the team behind last year’s sell-out hypnotism show comes The Hypnotist: Séance, in which the audience are invited to make contact with the dead. Your link to the Other Side for the evening is the charismatic Kyle Fearn, described by The Cambridge Student as “a captivating stage presence, with good repartee.” Expect laughter (nervous or otherwise), smoke and the unexpected. Tickets £5-£7. Over 18s only.
Explore the Victorians’ fascination with the macabre at the imposing, historic Audley End House. Join your mysterious host in the Great Hall to hear tales of dark deeds, ghostly apparitions in the Service Wing and scary happenings out in the grounds. This is a unique opportunity to view the house and grounds after hours, and takes place on the evenings of 30 and 31 October, 6pm and 8pm. Tickets £20 (£15 English Heritage members).
Take a Halloween tour of historic Ely and discover the stories which lurk in its shadows. A number of ghost tours are on offer within the city, starting from the famously haunted Oliver Cromwell’s House. This impressive timber building is thought to be visited by the restless ghost of the Lord Protector himself, who lived here for ten years. Children’s voices have also been heard, and watch out for the Blue Lady – said to wander the corridors. From the house, you’ll pass by the graveyard and the old militia hospital, as guides regale stories of the one-eyed Black Shuck, a faceless monk and bodysnatchers. For more information, contact the Tourist Information.
Dress to impress for Neon Moon’s sensational Grand Halloween Ball at The Guildhall, 31 October. Slip into a dusty ballgown or spider-webbed suit as darkness falls, then gather with other painted skeletons, ghoulish gentlemen and undead brides for a dark burlesque ball deep in the historic centre of Cambridge. There will be vintage music and performances from the Exotic Luna Rosa, Mr Joe Black, Betty Noir, plus many more. The dress code is strict, so don’t be shy – the more creative and fabulous the better! Dance the night way from 8pm till 2am. Tickets £35 on the door, or £28.50 in advance.
Halloween for the kids…
Halloween in the Woods
Dress up and head for Wandlebury Country Park for this popular evening of Halloween howls! Kids can carve their own scary pumpkins and see them lit by candlelight on a guided twilight walk around the park. Your spine thoroughly chilled, head back to the stable rooms to warm up with hot drinks around the fire. Bring a torch and wrap up warm. It’s happening on 31 October, 3.30-6.30pm; tickets £8 per pumpkin.
Pull on your favourite jumper and boots and head out for the Suffolk countryside to pick your own pumpkin, fresh from the fields. Let the kids run loose and see how these marvellous tangerine gourds get from the ground to your living rooms. Undley Pumpkin Patch is open Saturdays and Sundays, and during half term (9am-5pm). As well as pumpkins there’s a themed maze to find your way out of, a bouncy castle and more.
Visit the Raptor Foundation in Woodhurst on 31 October for an evening of seasonal fun. Take a guided tour of the centre, meeting their beautiful owls and birds of prey, identify owl calls and watch them fly, go bat detecting then join in some arts and crafts. It’s £8.50 per head, which includes soup, a roll and a cake. Come in fancy dress – there’ll be a prize for the best costume. (6-9pm).
Terror on the tracks!
It’s all aboard the Wizarding Express this October, as the Nene Valley Railway, near Peterborough, announce their special Halloween event. On Saturday 31st, bring your lovely little horrors to enjoy a spooky ride inspired by a certain boy wizard. Adults and kids alike are invited to don their best wizarding outfits then hop aboard a historic locomotive for a 90-minute ride through haunted tunnels – mind you don’t get turned into frogs along the way! Arrive at 6.30pm for a 7pm departure, and don’t forget to collect a goodie bag once you’re on board. The fare is £13.50; pounds only please, no Galleons, Sickles or Knuts, thank you.
Pumpkins and Spooks
Farmed for over 2000 years and a home to nuns in medieval times, Denny Abbey hosts a spooktacular family event on 25 October. Come dressed to scare and try your hand at pumpkin carving and apple bobbing, line up for a broomstick race and join in singing spooky songs. The event runs 10.30am-4pm. Then on 28 and 29 October, there are half-term family drop-in sessions between 12-4pm, normal admission charges apply.