From deadly drive-ins to spooky afternoon teas: How you can have a Covid-safe Halloween in Great Yarmouth
- Credit: Nick Butcher
With the spectre of Covid-19 looming large there are still plenty of ways to enjoy Halloween in Great Yarmouth.
Because of the risks associated with gatherings, trick-or-treating in its usual form is off-limits, but people are still coming up with ways to have fun in their own bubbles and at home.
Some communities are planning spooky trails but in Bradwell Neil Potter’s huge collection of skeletons and terrifying trimmings will remain packed away in boxes for 2020.
His home in El Alamein Way has been a magnet for children in costume who come to marvel at the display.
He shared his disappointment on Facebook saying it would not be going ahead on the advice of police and council officials.
He said: “I may still put out a couple of props as part of the pumpkin trail.
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“As you can imagine we are very disappointed not to be able to fully participate in our traditional way, but hope you all can understand why we have made this decision.”
However, there are still some events you can go out to and remain safe and socially distanced:
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Great Yarmouth Pleasure Beach is going all out for its first Halloween spectacular featuring live actors, shocks and surprises on rides, and light projections.
Running on the evenings of October 28 to 31, 5-8pm, the park says it has assembled top performing talent from across the country as well as closer to home.
Caister-based Emily Forder, who also works at the Pleasure Beach, and Jordan McColgan, from Yarmouth, are among those ready to do some scaring.
Aaron Jones, Pleasure Beach marketing director, said: “There will be all the thrills of the fair along with the live scare actors who will be within the attractions and roaming the park where you would least expect them.
“They will tone up or tone down their characters according to the audience so it will be aimed at all ages.”
Fellow director Jamie Jones added: “We have put a wide range of precautions in place for everyone to come along during the current restrictions so they feel safe and can have a good time.”
Tickets £17 via www.pleasure-beach.co.uk, not suitable for under fives.
Spooky drive-in cinema
If you missed it over the summer Hirsty’s fun park in Hemsby is hosting all the cult classics over Halloween.
Over three nights there will be an earlier showing of something family friendly, followed by something with a bit more bite.
The movies being screened are Hocus Pocus at 6.30pm followed by the Rocky Horror Picture Show at 9.30pm on October 29; The Adams Family at 6.30pm followed by The Lost Boys at 9.30pm on October, 30; and Ghostbusters at 6.30pm and Friday the 13th at 9.30pm on October 31.
Prices start at £25 per car, visit the website to book.
The Halloween show at the Hippodrome has become a half-term must-see. There are a few changes this year to comply with social distancing and for the first time it will be played out in the round.
Featuring Jack Jay and Johnny Mac the perfomances are being staged in a spooky fairground and audiences are encouraged to play their part by dressing up too.
The show opens on October 22 and runs for ten days until November 1,
Tickets via the box office on 01493 738877. Find out more here.
Day of the Dead Family Saturday
Seachange Arts, based in the Drill House, York Road, is hosting two fun-packed craft making and circus workshops for all the family on October 24.
Sessions are at 1-2.30pm and 3-4.30pm and involve Day of the Dead activities where you can make decor to take home.
It is billed as a chance to kick back with friends and family, enjoy a drink and delicious homemade soup from Quayside Plaza.
Entry is free but capacity is extremely limited, and bookings are in groups of up to six people. Tables must be booked in advance via the website.
Hirsty’s Halloween Hoot
Pick a pumpkin, have your face painted, take part in an a-maizing parade - it’s all happening at Hirsty’s in Hemsby.
As well as all the usual play equipment extra Halloween-themed events will be staged at the site from October 22 to November 1, with prizes for the best costume and best pumpkin.
Tickets £10 and £5 (carers and aged two and under free) via the website.
Binky’s Halloween Afternoon Tea
How about serving up a sweet treat for your little monsters (or grown-up ghouls) at Binky’s Cafe in Bell Lane, Belton?
The family-run cafe is laying on its popular afternoon teas with a Halloween twist, expect gingerbread mummies and spooky sponge cakes.
Book in advance via 01493 717000.
From Aquarium to Ascarium at the SeaLife Centre
Get up close with monsters from the deep at the seafront SeaLife Centre’s Halloween trail. Youngsters are invited to find missing potion ingredients to complete the spell for the Sea Life Seawitch and be rewarded with a sweet treat.
The event runs from October 17 to November 1.
Prices start from £9.95. To book go to www.visitsealife.com.
Monsters of a different kind populate an alien world at the Time and Tide Museum of Great Yarmouth Life.
The museum’s May the Toys Be With You Star Wars-themed exhibition continues this half term with on site activities to entertain families.
Young fans will love the Where’s Wookie trail, spotting Han’s hairy companions to become a member of the resistance.
Also available are design-a-droid goody gags so you can create your own personal droid as well as exploring the history of astronomy and space exploration. Activities are free with a paid child ticket. Book your timed slot online here.
Monster Villain Safari
Get the kids walking with a monster villain safari in Great Yarmouth town centre.
Ten monster villains have been spotted in these parts and it’s their job to find them.
Start the safari by going to monstervillainsafari.com and finding their first character.
Learn the names, stories and powers of all ten creepy but cute villains and then read about their first mischievous adventure in a free eBook.
To take part scan any character’s QR code to begin collection them, hunt down the monstrous villains using the map, learn their names, stories and powers by scanning their QR codes. When you’ve found them all download and read your very own eBook.
To find out more click the link here.