A fiendishly good half-term awaits at National Park attractions
The Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority’s three visitor attractions will all be hosting Halloween-themed activities and events this October half term, with ghostly goings on and terrifying treats for the whole family to enjoy.
Carew Castle, Castell Henllys Iron Age Fort and Oriel y Parc Gallery and Visitor Centre will host a packed programme of activities and events to appeal to all ages throughout the school holiday period.
Events at Carew Castle and Tidal Mill include the chance to search the creepy Castle for un-dead clues in a Ghost Hunt from 21 October to 5 November. Those brave enough to make their way through the dark and haunted Tidal Mill, dressed for Halloween, will also be pleased to hear that Creepy Mill: A haunted house experience! will be returning for a second year of spooky scares, free with normal admission.
Interactive storytelling sessions with a spooky twist will also take place at the Castle on 2 and 3 November at 10.15am, 12.15pm and 2pm. The Room on the Broom Storytelling Workshops invite you to settle by the roaring fire as Carew’s very own witch uses props to bring Julia Donaldson’s magical picture book Room on the Broom to life. These fun one-hour sessions are recommended for ages 4 – 8 and booking is essential.
Other events include Clay Ghost Workshops, The Shadow of the Vampire: A Live Interactive Action Adventure and Halloween Hi-jinks with the Forest Fairies and Friends.
Nest Tearoom will be open daily between 10.30am and 4pm, serving light lunches, homemade cakes and Halloween-themed treats, along with its legendary luxury hot chocolate.
See www.carewcastle.com for the full programme of half-term events and further details, including prices and opening times.
At Castell Henllys Iron Age Village, there’s a chill in the air as the ancient Festival of Samhain, or Calan Gaeaf, approaches. From 22 October to 5 November, visitors will be able to follow a spooky pumpkin trail as they hunt for ghosts of Pembrokeshire’s past in the Haunted Henllys Trick and Treat Trail. There will also be opportunities to reconnect with your ancestors and try out a variety of Prehistoric activities, including breadmaking, from Monday to Thursday.
In Pembrokeshire Ghost Stories on the afternoon of 21 October, the dark woods around the village will form the setting for a ghostly tour and an introduction to the strange and spine-chilling stories of creatures and characters of Welsh folklore.. Booking for this event and the highly anticipated Samhain Celebration on 28 October is essential. One of the highlights of the Castell Henllys calendar, this day of seasonal festivities will include woad painting, fire lighting demonstrations, tales of the Otherworld and much more.
At Oriel y Parc, young visitors can join the Lost Potion Trail from 28 October to 5 November, and win a spooktacular prize for finding the secret ingredients to help the witch finish her magical potion. There will also be a Wednesday Club! Make your own Dreamcatcher session to look forward to on 1 November. This is a drop-in session, which will make use of recycled and foraged materials.
Creatively-minded adults may be interested in taking part in an Experimental Drawing and Mark-Making Workshop with local artist Kate Freeman. Suitable for complete beginners as well as artists who wish to work in a more spontaneous way, the workshop will use a mixture of recycled and found materials with botanical inks. Booking is essential at a cost of £30 per person.
The Gallery will be open daily throughout half-term, exhibiting work by Ned Helyar, Judy Maynard and Chris Prosser.
There is also still a chance to explore the relationship between language and the living world in the Geiriau Diflanedig – The Lost Words exhibition. A touring exhibition, organised by Compton Verney, with Hamish Hamilton and Penguin Books, brings together the original artwork by Jackie Morris alongside the English language poems by Robert Macfarlane and Welsh language poems written by Mererid Hopwood.
Jackie Morris will be sharing her work in the Gallery at a free drop-in event on Saturday 4 November.
More information on all these events can be found at www.pembrokeshirecoast.wales/events.