This Halloween, Gloucestershire will be taken over by an assortment of ghoulish celebrations – offering the perfect chance for little and big kids everywhere to get in on the spooky October action in 2015.
From ghosts and witches to devils and vampires, whether you will be dressing-up in scary fancy dress, carefully carving pumpkins, bobbing for apples or trick or treating in aid of the annual celebration, make sure you check out SoGlos’s guide to the spooky events taking place in Gloucestershire.
Venue: Everyman Theatre
Perfect for: All ages to enjoy a funny play with some grisly humour at one of Gloucestershire’s best theatres, while unearthing some of Britain’s blood-stained history.
What's happening: Find out how many times one actor can get killed during one performance when local favourites, Jenny Wren Productions, take to the Everyman Theatre on Wednesday 29 to Saturday 31 October with the comical yet macabre production, Burke and Hare. Based on one of Britain’s most shocking and ghastly murder stories, the show tells the true story of two murderers who sell their victims’ corpses for anatomical research. Stretching the truth in some parts, and focusing on the hysterical, rather than the historical, the production offers a spooky night out at the theatre for a Halloween show with a twist.
SoGlos loves: What’s more, if you fancy taking a look behind the scenes of the Victorian theatre, its theatre tour will take place on Saturday 31 October 2015, offering the chance to get up close to the stage, wings and dressing rooms and hear exciting tales about its history.
How much: Tickets for Burke and Hare cost £10.50, £9 for concessions; while the Theatre Tour costs £10, £5 for under 16s.
When: Burke and Hare takes place from Wednesday 29 to Saturday 31 October; while the Theatre Tour takes place on Saturday 31 October 2015.
For more information: See Burke and Hare at Everyman Theatre
To book: Call Everyman Theatre on (01242) 572573, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit everymantheatre.org.uk directly.
Venue Leisure at Cheltenham
Perfect for: Some fun exercise, strutting your stuff on the dance floor and learning some cool new moves to show off at the Halloween Ball.
What’s Happening: Leisure at Cheltenham has a host of half term activities planned this October spanning swimming crash courses, trampolining taster sessions, badminton classes, street dance and more, with the chance for little ones to join the Zumba revolution in classes for ages four to seven, as well as mum and kids sessions too. What’s more, Leisure at Cheltenham will also be hosting a Halloween Soft Play session on Friday 30 October 2015, giving parents a well-deserved break while children work off all that Halloween sugar energy.
SoGlos loves Kids can cool off after their dance sessions and sports activities by plunging into Leisure at Cheltenham’s 33-metre pool, with the chance to show off some cool moves for those brave enough to tackle the centre’s diving boards.
How much: Half term activities range between £3 and £25
When: Monday 20 to Friday 30 October 2015
For more information: See Half term at Leisure at Cheltenham
To book: Call Cheltenham Leisure on (01242) 528764, email email@example.com or visit leisureatcheltenham.com directly.
Venue: The Boathouse
Perfect for: Getting into the spirit of Halloween in the week leading up to it, with activities to fright and delight the kids, as well as plenty going on for older children, parents and adults to enjoy.
What’s Happening: The Boathouse at Pittville Park will host a week of activities to thrill children and adults alike throughout the Halloween half term. Situated next to the beautiful lake, cheeky children can let their imaginations run wild with Scary Bones Treasure Hunting around the park; Ghoulish Ghost Storytelling; Spooky Arts and Crafts; as well as a fabulous Niggles Magic show to follow. What’s more, taking place on the Saturday, little ones can be transfored into mini monsters, with free face-painting taking place. Meanwhile, grown-ups can enjoy a roaring barbecue if the autumnal sunshine holds out, as well as Cheltenham Coffee Co’s refreshments and homemade cakes, and Pittville Park’s usual boat hire, tennis and golf facilities.
SoGlos loves: This week-long Halloween celebration provides families with a day out at one of Cheltenham’s most beautiful parks, with children’s entertainment, refreshments and a stroll around the lake sure to keep everyone happy.
How much: Spooky Arts and Crafts, Ghoulish Ghost Storytelling and Face painting is free of charge; Nibbles Magic Show costs £3.50 for children, £2 for adults and concessions; while the Scary Bones Treasure Hunt costs £1.
When: Monday 26 to Saturday 31 October 2015
For more info: See Halloween Spook-tacular at Pittville Park
To book: Call Cheltenham Coffee Co. on (01242) 519215, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit cheltenhamcoffeeco.com directly.
Venue: Leisure at Cheltenham and Balcarras School.
Perfect for: Keeping little terrors out of mischief throughout the half-term week, while providing them with a safe and fun place to celebrate the spookiest time of the year.
What’s Happening: The Cheltenham Trust is launching a week of activities this Halloween with its Ofsted-registered ‘Play Scream’. Aimed at little monsters aged five to 11, children will be able to get stuck in with a wide range of activities spanning arts and crafts, Wii and Xbox games, movie screenings, fancy dress and role play sessions, and sports and group games. Taking place at Leisure at Cheltenham on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, kids can expect creepy crafts, pumpkin-carving, Halloween Zumba and face-painting. Meanwhile, Tuesday’s session will take place at Balcarras School, boasting bat and ball games, pumpkin relays and a ‘pin the spider in his web’ game.
SoGlos loves: Taking place from 8.30am to 5.30pm, this week-long Halloween celebration provides working parents with a safe place to leave their children throughout the day, while children will love celebrating all things Halloweeny, with plenty to keep them busy.
How much: Places cost £20 for the full day, £15 for a half day
When: Monday 26 to Friday 30 October 2015
For more info: See Halloween Play Scream in Cheltenham
To book: Call Cheltenham Trust on (01242) 528764, email email@example.com or visit cheltenhamtrust.org.uk directly.
Venue: Regent Arcade Shopping Centre
Perfect for: The chance for little ones to go trick or treating in a totally safe environment, packed with plenty of entertainment and activities to delight the mini monsters.
What’s happening: Cheltenham’s Regent Arcade is hosting a special trick or treat event this Halloween, giving children the chance to pick up a bucket and a map from the arcade’s promotional stand and get set to explore the Shopping Centre and hunt for 10 hidden ghosts – just watch out for the spooky characters that will be gliding around. Ten of the arcade’s retailers will be getting involved too, ready to hand out stickers and treats for every ghost that is found, as well as donning some fake blood and vampire teeth to spook the little ones. What’s more, as well as free face-painting, the Gloucestershire Police Community Support Officers will be on hand, ready to offer some advice on how to keep safe throughout the dark winter months.
SoGlos loves: Boasting toy stores, sweet shops, independent retailers, flagship stores, restaurants and a car park too, Regent Arcade has it all under one roof, providing families with everything they need for a great day out.
When: Saturday 31 October 2015
For more information: See Halloween trick or treat at Regent Arcade.
To book: Call Regent Arcade on (01242) 521345 or visit regentarcade.co.uk directly.
Venue: Primrose Vale, Shurdington Road, Bentham, Cheltenham, GL51 4UA
What’s happening: Little and big kids alike can take on the challenge of this year’s spooky Halloween trail, with mysteries to complete around every corner of the farm. Plus, there’s also a prize for all wicked witches and ghastly ghouls taking part.
When: From Friday 23 October to Sunday 1 November 2015
To book: Call Primrose Vale on (01452) 863359
Venue: Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway
What’s happening: Don your ghastliest get-up and ride the Spooky Special train through a haunted tunnel, with ghoulish games, ghost hunting and the chance to meet the Wicked Witch of Winchcombe along the way.
When: Saturday 31 October 2015
To book: Call Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway on (01242) 621405
Venue: Sudeley Castle
What’s happening: Enjoy a host of spooky happenings at Sudeley in 2015, including ghost tours, themed arts and crafts, a Halloween magician, a carved pumpkin display and much more.
When: Monday 26 to Saturday 31 October 2015
To book: Call Sudeley Castle on (01242) 604244
Venue: Chedworth Roman Villa
What’s happening: Discover Chedowrth’s spookier side, with live bats, a deep wood to explore, a children’s trail, fancy dress, and seasonal crafts to get involved in.
When: Saturday 22 October to Sunday 1 November 2015
To Book: Call Chedworth Roman Villa on (01242) 890256
Venue: South Cerney Outdoor Pursuits
What’s happening: South Cerney will transform its stunning lake into an eerie vision this Halloween with a haunted pirate ship touring the lake, lantern-lit canoe tours to the witch’s island, underground catacombes and a roaring bonfire to toast some marshmallows.
When: Saturday 31 October 2015
To book: Call South Cerney on (01285) 860388
Venue: Dean Heritage Centre.
Perfect for: Letting little imaginations run wild, with a host of trails, spooky crafts and exciting activities for children to get stuck into this Halloween.
What’s Happening: The dragons are returning to Dean Heritage Centre this Halloween with the chance for little ones to get involved with a lots of noise and bright colours in a dragon procession along with the chance to create their own decorative dragon puppet. What’s more, there will also be a Halloween trail across the centre, with 15 ghosts to find, with a treat for successful ghost-hunters that don’t get tricked. Visitors can also get creative in the ghoul medallion craft activities, with the chance to create a spooky monster to take home or a creepy crawly bug box.
SoGlos loves: Dean Heritage Centre will also be running spooky competitions in the lead-up to the holiday, with a pumpkin carving competition which will see the winner receive a free family ticket to the centre; while a selfie competition will test who can pull the scariest face next to the wicked witch, with the winner receiving a Dean Heritage Centre sculpture.
How much: Admission costs £7.20, £6.30 for concessions, £5.50 for children, and free of charge for children under three.
When: Saturday 31 October to Sunday 1 November 2015
For more info: See Dragon and Halloween extravaganza
To book: Call Dean Heritage Centre on (01594) 822170, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit deanheritagecente.com directly.
What’s happening: Some cheeky and colourful witches have crash-landed in the Forest of Dean. Follow a set of clues, explore the forest’s maze of winding pathways and discover the magic of Puzzlewood.
When: Monday 26 October to Sunday 1 November 2015
To book: Call Puzzlewood on (01594) 833187
Venue: Gloucester City Museum
Perfect for: Getting creative, cultured and exploring unseen parts of Gloucester, with plenty of fun for little ones this Halloween half term.
What’s happening: Gloucester City Museum will host a number of child-friendly activities this Halloween half term. Brave little ones can join forces with a real-life Roman soldier in full uniform and venture beneath the pavements of Gloucester City in the Eastgate Roman Soldier tours on Tuesday 27 to Saturday 31 October 2015. Meanwhile, there will be plenty going on to keep children of all ages busy on Tuesday 27 October 2015 with a spooky-themed Museum Makers Halloween workshop. Crafty kids can get stuck in and create their own eyeball hacky sacks to take home, making the perfect toy for Halloween.
SoGlos loves: With plenty going on at the museum to keep little monsters of all ages busy, parents can opt to stay and join in the fun, or if they prefer, take a trip into town and relax with a coffee or do some shopping, while the kids enjoy themselves.
How much: Ticket prices vary.
When: Eastgate Roman Tours take place on Tuesday 27 to Saturday 31 October 2015; while the Museum Makers takes place on Tuesday 27 October 2015.
For more info: See Eastgate Roman Soldier Tours or Museum Makers Halloween Workshop
To book: Call Gloucester City Museum on (01452) 396131, email email@example.com, or visit gloucester.gov.uk directly.
Venue: Gloucester Folk Museum
Perfect for: Putting your sleuthing skills to the test, getting a rare chance to handle the museum’s own collection, and celebrating apple day, just in time for some traditional Halloween apple bobbing.
What’s happening: Gloucester Folk Museum has a half term packed with family-friendly activities this Halloween, with crafty children able to get into the Halloween spirit by creating their own eyeball hacky sacks on Tuesday 27 October 2015 in a Museum Makers Halloween workshop. Meanwhile, little Sherlocks will be putting their thinking caps on at the Museum Detective Club, with the chance to handle some rare Museum artefacts and get stuck in with crafts, stories trails and talks on Saturday 31 October 2015.
SoGlos loves: Halloween isn’t Halloween without apple bobbing, and Gloucester Folk Museum will host that and much more at its annual Apple day. Visitors can watch as a horse turns the juicy fruits into delicious local cider at its traditional cider mill, with visitors invited to try their hands at crushing the apples, and of course, tasting the finished product.
How much: Ticket prices vary.
When: Apple Day takes place on Saturday 24 October; Museum Makers on Tuesday 27 October; and Detective Club on Saturday 31 October 2015.
For more info: See Museum Makers Halloween Workshop; Detectives Club; or Apple Day
To book: Call Gloucester folk Museum on (01452) 396868, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit gloucester.gov.uk directly.
Venue Café Rene
Perfect for: Digging out your old, tatty clothes, grabbing some face paint and joining in with hordes of zombies for a family friendly, if a little gory, walk around the city.
What’s happening? The undead will take to the city streets for Café Rene’s sixth annual Gloucester Zombie Walk. Led by the Renegade Crew, hundreds of Halloween fans will don fake blood, ripped clothes and fancy dress and take a spooky stroll through the city centre. Taking inspiration from similar large scale events in London, Brighton and Manchester, this event has become a huge local Halloween highlight, proven to be great fun for adults, children and even well-behaved four-legged friends.
SoGlos loves: While we don’t need much of an excuse to dig out the facepaint, the Gloucester Zombie Walk also does its bit for great causes by collecting hundreds of pounds each year for Café Rene’s sponsored charity – this year’s being Sue Ryder Care.
How much: Free of charge, with collections for Sue Ryder Care
When: Saturday 31 October 2015
For more info: See Gloucester Zombie Walk
To book: There’s no need to book, but for specific enquiries call Café Rene on (01452) 309340, email email@example.com, or check out the dedicated Facebook event page facebook.com/events/1646965385584452 directly.
Venue Sherborne Cinema
Perfect for: A trip to the cinema to see some of the latest blockbuster movies, with prices that won’t break the bank.
What’s happening: Boutique Gloucester picture palace, Sherborne Cinema, has a line-up of children’s films ready to keep kids out of trouble this October half term. Offering some of the newest Hollywood films, cinema-goers can catch action-packed thriller The Maze Runner: Scorch Trials; see everyone’s favourite yellow characters in Minions; or get into the Halloween spirit with a host of goblins, elves, fairies and imps in Strange Magic. What’s more, with children’s matinee tickets costing just £3.50, and refreshments including hot chocolate, ice-cream and popcorn for as little as £1, this is one school holiday activity without a scary price.
SoGlos loves: While the family-friendly matinee screenings are perfect for little moviegoers, Sherborne Cinema is also catering for grown-up film buffs this Halloween too, with the sci-fi spectacular, The Martian and Shakespeare’s supernatural story Macbeth set to be beamed onto the silver screen too.
When: From Saturday 10 October to Thursday 5 November 2015
For more information: See Half term films for kids at Sherborne Cinema and Film screenings at Sherborne Cinema
To book: Call Sherborne Cinema on (01452) 520560 or visit sherbornecinema.co.uk directly.
Venue: King's Walk Shopping Centre
What’s happening: Whether you’re after cobwebs, spiders and haunted house decorations; some cute costumes for your little monsters; scary masks to frighten trick-or-treaters; or a terrifying outfit to scare all of your neighbours, you can find it all at King’s Walk Shopping Centre this Halloween when The Party Shop sets up shop for the autumn. Boasting the go-to place for all your fancy-dress needs, The Party Shop will be offering everything from adult and children fancy dress costumes to buy or to hire; party decorations and trick-or-treat goodies; traditional props such as fake blood and vampire teeth, as well masks, wigs, make-up and more.
SoGlos loves: Situated right in the heart of Gloucester City, King’s Walk Shopping Centre boasts excellent parking facilities, making it easy for families to make a real day of it. With a range of shops to get some early Christmas shopping done, a number of snack choices to grab a hot drink, as well as plenty to see and do in Gloucester, families can head to the retail destination safe in the knowledge that there’s something going on to keep everyone happy.
When: The Party Shop will be open for six weeks over the half term period
How much: Free of charge.
For more info: See King’s Walk Shopping Centre
To book: There's no need to book, but for specific information call (01452) 304953 or visit kingswalk.co.uk directly.
Perfect for: Learning about Gloucester’s mysterious history and meeting a few ghosts on the way in one of the town’s spookiest weekly events.
What’s happening: Paranormal investigators, The Paranutty Sisters, will be taking groups of local ghost hunters on a spooky journey through the dark and narrow alleys of Gloucester this Halloween – said to be the 10th spookiest place in Britain. Meeting at the Tourist Information Centre every Wednesday and Thursday evening, the sisters will take guests to some of the cities ghostly hot spots such as Gloucester Cathedral, Gloucester Prison and Blackfriars Priory, and down many dark, cobbled lanes. With many reported sightings of ghosts in Gloucester, see if you can spot some of the deceased in a spooky event that is sure to be filled with bumps in the night.
SoGlos loves: Bringing something new to the Gloucester Ghost Walks, the Paranutty Sisters, Anne and Denise, have announced a number of exciting new elements to the tours, including overnight events, vigils, Ouija boards and more, hoping to widen the net to host events throughout the whole of Gloucestershire.
How much: Tickets cost £10, £7 for concessions, £5 for children.
When: Wednesday 28 and Thursday 29 October 2015
For more info: See Gloucester Ghost Walks
To book: Call The Paranutty Sisters on 07910 003180 or 07725 991288, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit gloucesterghostwalks.co.uk/ directly.
Venue: Over Farm, Over, Gloucester, GL2 8DB
What’s happening: A sell-out event year on year, Frightmare returns in 2015 with a jam-packed line-up of events for children during the day, such as pumpkin picking and live entertainment, while a host of live action horror attractions emerge in the night for brave adults, including the terrifying Haunted Hayrides, Séance, Caged and Fright House.
When: From Saturday 10 October to Sunday 1 November 2015
To book: Call Over Farm on (01452) 521014
Venue: Mercure Gloucester Bowden Hall
What’s happening: Budding sleuths can test their detective skills while enjoying a sumptuous three-course dinner at Gloucester’s Bowden Hall Hotel’s thrilling and interactive Halloween event.
When: Friday 30 October 2015
To book: Call Mercure Bowden Hall on 0844 815 9077
Venue: Café Rene
What’s happening: Grab your face paint and fake blood and take part in the sixth annual Gloucester Zombie Walk, when the undead take to the streets.
When: Saturday 31 October 2015
To book: Call Café Rene on (01452) 309340
Venue: Slimbridge Wetland Centre
Perfect for: The chance to get stuck in to a host of fiendish fun at Slimbridge Wetland Centre, where little adventurers can get mucky and explore the yucky side of nature at its special half term Spooktacular.
What’s happening: A firm family-favourite day-out destination, Slimbridge Wetland Centre is giving little explorers the chance to go on an adventure this half term, with plenty of Halloween activities in store. Little ones can have a go at carving pumpkins; dissecting owl pellets; searching for the missing pumpkins hidden around the grounds, hand feeding the ducks; getting stuck in with some creepy crafts; with the chance to meet a wizard and his frogs and salamanders too. What’s more, little ones can head to the Weirdly Wild tent and watch some footage of animals filmed at night, before going on a quests with the warden to track the animals, looking for signs such as footprints and poo!
SoGlos loves: Start planning your costume now and don’t forget to arrive in fancy dress on the final weekend of the Spooktacular, with the chance for mini monsters, wicked witches, ghastly ghouls and more to get a picture with Slimbridge’s scarecrow, offering the perfect memento for what is sure to be a huge half term highlight.
When: Daily from Thursday 22 October to Sunday 1 November 2015
For more info: See Slimbridge Spooktacular
To book: Call Slimbridge Wetland Centre on (01453) 891223, email email@example.com, or visit wwt.org.uk/slimbridge directly.
Spooky Wild Woodchester
Venue: Woodchester Park
What’s happening: Woodchester Park will transform its beautiful woodland into an eerie vision, with spooky lairs, an open campfire, nature trails and more to fright and delight the little ones this Halloween.
When: Friday 30 October 2015
To Book: Call Woodchester Park on (01452) 814213
Venue: Roses Theatre
Perfect for: Little princes and princesses to enjoy a magical evening at the theatre, with one of the best-loved fairy tales of all time set to take to the stage.
What's happening: Take a break from monsters and ghosts and head to Roses Theatre for a magical evening of entertainment, when Hans Christian Anderson's beloved tale, The Snow Queen, is brought to life. Watch in awe as the cast from Ballet Theatre UK journey across a frozen land to break the curse of eternal winter, in a spellbinding show that boasts international dancers, beautiful costumes, stunning stage sets and a magical score.
SoGlos loves: Following an extensive refurbishment over the summer months, audiences will be treated to a first look at the modernised arts centre, with an extended atrium; new downstairs coffee bar; overhauled toilets; new dining facilities offering pre-show meals; as well as a freshly painted and re-carpeted interior.
How much: Tickets to The Snow Queen cost £21.25; £19.25 for concessions; £39.75 for a family of three; or £53 for a family of four.
When: Wednesday 28 October 2015
For more information: See The Snow Queen ballet at Roses Theatre
To book: Call (01684) 295074, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit rosestheatre.org directly.
Venue: The John Moore Museum
What’s happening: Bat expert, David Endacott, will be introducing visitors to a selection of live, rescued British bats and explaining all about these fascinating, furry creatures of the night.
When: Saturday 24 October 2015
To book: Call The John Moore Museum on (01684) 297174
The SoGlos team will be updating this central guide as more spooky events are announced, so keep checking back or sign-up to SoGlos’s free newsletter for the very latest information.
Thursday 01 October 2015
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