I love halloween. Back when I was younger I loved the excuse to get dressed up for a halloween party or night out. I dont get the chance nowadays as halloween has become all about our kids. Im pretty sure if you asked my missus she would tell you that Halloween/Bonfire night is her favourite time of the year! So much so that the house becomes decorated from the first week in October!
So when we were recently invited to Scream Factories VIP preview night along with plenty of other influencers and bloggers I was over the moon. The missus not so much – she loves all the decorations and activities but she does not do well with anything remotely scary. I honestly dont think she has seen one horror movie, not even the classics!
So once the date came we set off not really knowing what to expect on arrival. We arrived half an hour early and parked the car in the museum car park as instructed There were plenty of wanted signs pinned on tree walkway for you to follow to the venue.
We seemed to wait for a lengthy period of time before anyone got to enter and just as I was starting to get a little bored out came a few surprises wandering through the crowd. The clown with his shovel scraping along the path instantly sent a chill up your spine. The missus instantly grabbed my arm stronger than she ever did during both labours of our sons and obviously I acted as masculine as I could but secretly I was hoping the nurse with her tongue half hanging out didnt come and cop a feel of me like she did with the chaps infront of us. There is something quite freaky about the way they linger round you and touch you.
When we were eventually invited in we were offered a glass of either something fizzy or a blood red lemonade and ushered off to have our photo taken. The tables were decorated with pumpkins and spiders that put our home creations to shame! food was also a plenty with a selection of pulled pork, pork and stuffing or beef to make your sandwich of choice. You could also get a hot chocolate and marshmallows – but we decided to save this for when we came back out, just incase we needed a sugar hit to get over the fright! There was photo opportunities with a few of the actors but as there was so many people I only managed to grab one or two.
The Scare Factory
After we ate our food we made our way over to the door where team members were putting together groups of around 8-10 people. We recieved a little brief – such as to watch your footing on uneven ground, to stick to the route etc. At this point I still didn’t really feel that scared of what was to come, however the missus was back holding on to my arm for dear life again!
We wandered off down the path and a man walked out from the trees. My first shock in all honesty and he wasnt even part of the show, just another crew member ensuring we were going the right way and presumbly ensuring that there was enough time gap between the groups entering. He told us to enter the Motel and my nerves kicked in at this point as I just didn’t know what to expect. We were second in the group behind 2 other women. A safe position i would think – no way would i want to be first and being at the back leaves you vulnerable.
GET YOURSELF PREPARED FOR PLENTY OF SHOCKS
I got my first three shocks in two minutes flat. Amongst the chaos and frights i ended up pushing my missus in front of me! Because I am just that much of a gentleman!
After 5 minutes I honestly didn’t think I was going to last all the way round because I just kept getting a fright at unexpected moments, which I know is the whole point but at some points I thought I may need a change of pants.
Without giving the game away and revealing too much there is basically a number of different zones; each with there own surprises. As your walking through black tunnels you cant help but wonder if something touched my leg. The anticipation of whats to come is what makes this walk so spectacularly scary.
A few of the zones were particularly more hair raising than others and some just weren’t scary at all – kind of a refuge to allow you to recover from the previous shock. A few of the areas were also there to test your senses more than anything – think strobe lighting, moving platforms and smoke!
Im pretty sure half way round that we seemed to loose two people from our group – either they succumbed to the horror of it all and scarpered home early or they got lost!
Half way round we somehow ended up at the back of group, which I didn’t like at all. The element of surprise disappeared somewhat because of hearing the screams of your group before you had even got there. I really felt as though 10 people was just too many for each group and it would work better if it was 4-6 people per group. But understandably the show is just so popular that it would make it impossible to get every one through the doors. Im sure there is an option to do the walk exclusively at set times and i would definitely consider that for next year.
We made it…JUST!
So we made it out alive – but only just! I think the missus will be considering the wearing of tena lady for next year!
This event is definitely up there with one of the best things we have done in a long time. The adrenaline, the excitement and the thrill of shocks has left me wanting more and I cant urge you enough to get booked up and GO!
Scream Factory is located on the Old Nursery site behind Kirkleatham Museum. We travelled from Sunderland on a Thursday evening and it took us forty minutes to get there. Well worth the extra travel.
Disclosure: I was invited to this event by InNewcastle in return for a totally honest review.
Im Lew – A blogger and father of two boys, three if you include the dog, living in Sunderland. Not sure I have the hang of this blog niche thing but hey ho, I’m doing it anyway – expect all sorts of randomness.