GHOST tours, after dark castle trips, a haunted Halloween afternoon tea, and a Festival of the Dead are among the spine-tingling family events taking place across Coventry and Warwickshire this half-term.
More than three-quarters of parents across the UK are saying ‘No’ to trick-or-treating his year, according to new study into how Halloween will be affected by Covid-19 with 54% saying they will have a small household party for their children, 31% saying they will watch spooky family movies and 25% say will be buying their children sweets or chocolate instead.
But if you are wishing to celebrate the season tourist attractions, museums and family attractions across the region are staging a range of Covid-safe events – many outdoor.
Helen Peters, Chief Executive of Shakespeare’s England, said: “It is wonderful to see so many members hosting Halloween events this year.
“It’s a really exciting range of events on offer this Autumn to make sure that the whole family can get into the spooky spirit and enjoy the holidays.
“2020 has been, and continues to be, an unprecedented one, with tourism and hospitality business hugely affected. So, I would urge families to get out and about, pay them a visit, show support and enjoy all the fantastic activities.”
Outdoor Monster art trail, Coventry city centre, Friday October 24-Saturday October 31
Be a monster detective and look out for eight mischievous monsters designed by artists, Filthy Luker and Pedro Estrellas, descending on Coventry and taking over rooftops in the city centre. Download the map here. Free.
Half-term Animation workshops, Let’s Animate, FarGo Village, Coventry, October 27-29
Coventry animation studio Lets Animate in FarGo Village is running workshops for children where they will be able to design and build a short animated scenario from their own drawings, Lego or Plasticine. They’re also organising socially distanced birthday parties, adhering to the rule of six.
The English Heritage site and restored Elizabethan gardens is hosts two events: Spooky Kenilworth Castle, from October 24-November 1, where children can dress up in their scariest outfits, follow a trail to solve creepy clues and listen to spooky stories with a fancy dress competition every day. Ghost Tours for ages 16+ runs from October 28-31, at 7pm, 7.30pm, 8pm and 8.30pm – join the Castle’s storytellers on a bone-chilling journey through the past with tales of ghosts and supernatural sightings.
A Haunted Halloween Afternoon Tea (two sittings), Coombe Abbey Hotel, Binley
The hotel is hosting a haunted Halloween Afternoon tea with spooky tales of Coombe or order a takeaway afternoon tea to collect.
The Haunted Castle,Warwick Castle October 24-November 1
Prepare for a Halloween adventure at Warwick Castle brimming with spooky tales, scary fun, and daytime themed attractions and activities for all ages. There’s also The Castle After Dark on October 24, 29, 30 and 31 – enjoy delicious street food and tasty tipples from Digbeth Dining Club in a Halloween-themed festival experience with live music and evening entertainment on the Main Stage. Experience nerve-jangling thrills in the Castle Dungeon After Dark and watch out for creepy characters in two scare mazes.
Destroy everyday items like a toaster, a telephone and other gadgets in quirky This Makes That With These family-friendly workshops or find out about different materials and the secrets of Outrageous Oobleck in the ‘Make And Play Engineers’ workshops. Alternatively, pick up one of the newly developed Mini Museum Engineers trails and play boxes.
Festival of the Dead, Herbert Art Gallery & Museum,October 24, 26, 28 and 30
Join in Mexican-inspired half-term workshops making Sugar Skull Luminaries and other ghostly decorations.
Where’s Wally? Spooky Museum Search and Rocket Science, British Motor Museum, Gaydon
The Warwickshire car museum is participating in the national Where’s Wally? Spooky Museum Search where families will be able to hunt for Wally.
Every day there will be a live 25-minute Rocket Science workshop with ‘Professor Pickle and Doctor Pumpkin’ at 11.30am, 12.30pm and 1.30pm (except October 28) full of interactive demonstrations and rocket inspired science.
An outdoor Rocket Workshop delivered by the STEM ambassadors from MOD Kineton will take place on October 28 between 11am and 3pm. Children can design and build their own rocket and see how far it flies from the pneumatic rocket launcher.
Museum of the Moon Compton Verney Art Gallery and park, from Thursday October 29 – November 1
spectacular touring artwork by UK artist Luke Jerram featuring a massive seven metres in diameter moon featuring detailed NASA imagery of the lunar surface. The park art and sound installation will be suspended in the avenue of Wellingtonia trees with music created by BAFTA and Ivor Novello award winning composer Dan Jones. A programme of related family activities will run alongside.
Warwick’s Royal Regiment of Fusiliers Museum
The museum has an indoor Halloween Trail during the half-term week.
See a three Dying Poison Arrow Frog & the the latest inhabitants in Minibeast Metropolis Stratford Butterfly Farm, October 24-November 1
Discover an assortment of creepy crawly creatures during half-term. What better way to spend the scariest time of the year than being surrounded by spiders, predatory beetles and a dessert hairy scorpion? On October 30 and 31, join the team for some Halloween fun and dress up as your favourite Halloween character, – the spookier the better.
Market Hall Museum Halloween Trail, Warwick
Discover a tale of curses and hauntings from 17th century Warwick. Book a free visit at warwickshire.gov.uk/heritageboxoffice You can also pick up an collect Halloween Activity Packs including a Bats and Eyeballs Kit for £5 or a £2 Arty Tots Halloween craft pack for under 5’s to make a ghost-on-a-string, ghoulish playdough and a haunted house. Visit warwickshire.gov.uk/heritageboxoffice to book your pick-up slot.
See The Dance of Death, Guild Chapel, Stratford-upon-Avon, October 20, 27 and 28
The Guild Chapel is reopening its doors over half-term with strict safety measures in place to six visitors at a time. Visitors will be allocated a 15-minute time slot on arrival between 11am–2pm and must wear a face mask or covering unless exempt. Those seeking some Halloween goulishness can try and spot the demons within the chapel paintings and find out about The Dance of Death. The image of Death is central to the Guild Chapel’s fascinating medieval past. Wall paintings dating back half a century are preserved in incredible detail; images of Death and the afterlife serving as stark reminder to its medieval congregation of the importance of living a good life.
Halloween Spooktacular, Cadbury World, Saturday October 17 – Sunday November 1
Expect no tricks and plenty of treats as the Bournville-based attraction launches its fang-tastic fun Halloween activities and entertainment this scary season. In the Cadbury World Marquee, enjoy live entertainment at Freddo’s Haunted Mansion and help him uncover the mystery ghost with plenty of spooks, games and a lot of fun! Children are encouraged to don their creepiest costume and get into the spooky spirit as they walk around on a self-guided tour, catch the talented chocolatiers in action and take a delicious taster for themselves in the Chocolate Making zone, before practising their piping skills by drawing their name in chocolate in the Have A Go zone. Visit the 4D Chocolate Adventure zone and experience the Crunchie Rollercoaster
West Midland Safari Park’s Spooky Spectacular, until November 1
See the animals out on Safari including their new Indian rhino calf and take part in ‘Mystery of the Pumpkin Thief’, a brand-new Covid-friendly interactive trail in a pumpkin-packed Halloween celebration. 2020 sees the Park’s very first pumpkin patch installation, decorated with more than 1100 pumpkins and 55 illuminated scarecrows – a great photo point for guests. The Discovery stage has been transformed so visitors can take a socially distanced selfie with the park’s witches and wizards. Brave guests will also be able to experience the Adventure Theme Park and Land of the Living Dinosaurs in the dark.
Warwickshire’s Contemporary Arts Fair Discover:Gather:Give Virtual Exhibition, October 30 – November 1
More than 50 artists from across the region will be exhibiting their work online this year on the weekend of October 30 – November 1 via Youtube. Work will be premiering every 30 minutes from 9.45am to 7pm each day. Artists will share their inspirations, new work, how they make their artwork and how to contact them for commissions or to buy their work directly. Each artist is listed on the Discover Gather Give website with more details of their work.