We visited Scare Kingdom Scream Park, one of the UK’s leading scare attractions to see what the 2014 line-up had to offer! What did we think? Find out below…
After a long day of travelling from the previous night’s visit to Tulleys Shocktober Fest Scream Park, we were quite exhausted as we checked into our hotel for the night.
On paper, the thought of venturing back out into the cold and trudging around the wet fields of Blackburn didn’t look great. However, this was Scare Kingdom, the famous and terrifying Scream Park we had visited on numerous occasions and fondly remembered.
We arrived at Scare Kingdom to a warm welcome at the entrance and after having our photo taken on the excellent green screen setup, we were placed into our group ready to enter the park’s first attraction – The Oubliette.
Having liked the Scare Kingdom Facebook page and spotted the cryptic clues that were released about The Oubliette earlier in the year, I was intrigued to find out what we had in store. I’d always remembered the ‘oubliette’ from the classic David Bowie film Labyrinth and had high hopes as our group was led into the attraction. The Oubliette turned out to be exactly the same as Scare Kingdom’s initial opening scene last year (just rebranded as an actual attraction for 2014). We were trapped in a rather tight cage which was located inside a strobe lit room. As a loud soundtrack was played, a masked actor began tormenting our group which had the desired effect with one or two who began to scream. The Oubliette didn’t have any narrative (or any that I could gather from the soundtrack which was probably too loud) and didn’t really seem to have much relevance to the other attractions. None the less, it built extreme levels of tension excellently and set the adrenaline fuelled tone for what was about to follow.
Having nervously approached The Clonefields, we were met by Abraham Cleaver, a fine actor (I may add), who warned us (with light humour) of the creatures that inhabited the attraction. As we entered the daunting moon lit corn fields, there were screams even before we’d even encountered some of The Slenderman’s disciples. The anticipation and pure terror of walking through the cornfields in darkness was too much for some of our group. As you can imagine, when the masked figures did begin to show themselves, panic and fear ensued. The Clonefields was one of the highlights of our night at Scare Kingdom. The narrative and inspiration behind the attraction was put to use excellently. The simple, yet effective scare tactics implemented did give an authentic ‘horror film’ experience. In previous years, Scare Kingdom have toyed with a number of themes and narratives which haven’t been so successful in the cornfields, I think this year, they’ve really hit the nail on the head. Excellent work!
After exiting The Clonefields and making our way to Hellcatraz, we were curious to see if the figure stood in the field adjacent was actually a scarecrow or human. We’ll let you find out which…
As we reached Hellcatraz we were greeted at the entrance by what appeared to be a distressed prison guard. He informed us of the storm that had cut off the prison’s power supply and caused the inmates to escape and effectively run riot. From here it was down to us to escape as we proceeded through the strobe lit black and white prison from hell! Along the way we encountered some great scenes including the boiler room, prison yard and cell block; all of which were filled with some terrifying actors who really made good use of their surroundings. After a frantic last scene, we finally managed to escape. Hellcatraz’s general construction and theming was brilliantly thought out. The maze really made use of every inch of floor space to maximize the experience of the group. A solid attraction and one we’d love to experience again.
Having experienced various versions of Manormortis, most recently L’a Mortis (one of our favourite scare attractions), we were excited to be welcomed in to a typically dark and intricately designed opening room. Unfortunately, we struggled to make out much of the back story due to the background audio being so loud. Never the less, we were still excited as we entered through the fireplace, a feature of Manormortis that will never grow old. Due to a switch around in the order of our group at the cell block scene in the previous Hellcatraz maze, we were knocked to the back for Manormortis which was unfortunately to the detriment of our experience. A good portion of scares and narrative building scenes were missed due to us being so far from the front. I recall hearing one of the drop panel scares (which seemed to work great for the front end of the group) but not actually seeing it. By the time we’d turned the corner, the actor and picture frame panel had reset ready for the next group. On the upside, being at the back allowed us to pay more attention to the truly wonderful Manormortis set. The attention to detail is superb and each scene has been finely crafted to create an overwhelming immersive experience. The ‘upside down’ room was a classy touch and fitted with the apparent witchcraft theme perfectly. On the whole, Manormortis: Covenstead does have the potential to be another legendary attraction in the Scare Kingdom portfolio, it has one of the UK’s most impressive sets and we’re more than willing to give it the benefit of the doubt after being pushed to the back of a fairly large group. Our expectation levels may also have been a tad high after experiencing the more extreme L’a Mortis (groups of 2 only) guise earlier in the year…
Following on from Manormortis was the final and highly anticipated maze, Human Zoo. Throughout the attraction we noticed a number of truly creative and dark pieces of theming which significantly added to the sick and twisted concept. The maze itself was immersive on a number of levels and had us ducking and crawling under passage ways and obstacles alike. The actor placement was precise and the impact scares were complimented subtly with some more hands on acting towards the finale. Human Zoo had our group jumping and screaming from pillar to post in what was a unique and frightening experience. The creative genius’s at Scare Kingdom have crafted a quirky and extreme live action horror maze which will both shock and surprise guests throughout the season.
To conclude, Scare Kingdom, along with it’s 2014 line-up of mazes is once again pushing the boundaries of the UK scare industry. Located in Clayton-Le-Dale just outside Blackburn, the Scream Park offers an excellent night of extreme immersive entertainment. As one of our favourite attractions, Scare Kingdom strives to keep progressing each year and 2014 is no different. Be sure to visit this year and don’t forget to enter discount code ‘facebook’ when buying tickets online below…