Abbotsham, our little village in North Devon is probably one of the best places in the country to enjoy a bit of Halloween fun. The family-friendly, village pub, The Thatched Inn, is reborn for a couple of weeks in October as a chamber of horrors and The Big Sheep, our local tourist attraction has an amazing Halloween Festival promoting Fun-by-Day, Fear-by-Night With late availability discounts, for anyone who has not experienced North Devon in October I really recommend a visit at this time of year!
Halloween fun isn't just for little monsters. Whatever your age it can be a great excuse to let your hair down, especially if you want quality time with family or friends and want some memories to treasure! Forget pagan rituals and Trick-or-Treating but do enjoy the sheer silliness of dressing up, getting the face-paints out... and enjoy those ghastly, slimy, scary things that make you squeal and jump and laugh!!
At a Rotary meeting last week (to plan the Bideford Water Festival for 2020) I was delighted to find our village pub, The Thatched Inn, was already decorated for the Halloween Season. Our wonderful Landlord, Les Heard, decorates every room in the pub for a couple of weeks every October. He fills it with "seasonal treats" making it a great meeting place for witches' covens and for devils to dance. Perhaps not such a good venue for a formal Rotary committee meeting! we were regularly interrupted by hollow, haunting screams and a caged skeleton in a corner of the room, rattling the bars, trying to escape!. The decapitated heads of locals who had not payed their tab were displayed on the carvery hot plate!
Only 15 minutes walk away, our local tourist attraction, The BIG Sheep's Fun-by-Day Halloween festival is great family entertainment but the Scary-by-Night Halloween evenings (6pm - 10pm) featuring live actors, pyrotechnics, gory special effects and jump scares are definitely not for the faint hearted. Fun by day.... scary by night... Halloween specials in October, in addition to all the normal entertainment, has become rather a ritual way for Big Sheep staff to let off steam and celebrate the end of the season. Features include toddler monster balls, witches' flying school, pumpkin carving and skeletons and spiders everywhere! Fun and laughter and family entertainment by day BUT BE WARNED.... as twilight falls.... demons rise to hunt for fresh souls.
Are you brave enough to take a trip on the Haunted Hayride as it takes you on a journey through the Gates of Hell... or take a white-knuckle ride on the Terror Train as it creeps through the darkness? The haunted house will have you screaming for the exit as each room unleashes a new interactive terror and who will dare to try Arachnophobia or the Twister Terror ride? All the staff become Halloween Characters to entertain their visitors. (It is worth purchasing Big Sheep tickets in advance as there are discounts offered but also as there is a limit on entry numbers and it is very popular with the locals)
All we ask at Southclay and The Annex is that you shower off the face-paint and slime before you jump in the hot tub to watch the bats and witches flit across the sky at the end of the evening!
Some late availability now heavily discounted this October.