Tulleys Shocktober Fest is back once again for 2019 with a bigger & better lineup than ever before. Boasting 10 attractions including 2 brand new mazes, a new expanded area within the park along with the known favourites such as The Haunted Hayride & Chop Shop returning for some of the biggest screams this Halloween.
Tulleys Shocktober Fest is located near Crawley in the South East of the UK. We were kindly invited down for the opening & press night to experience the whole scare park for what would be our fourth year visiting. Our favourites from previous years would be Chop Shop, Haunted Hayride and The Cellar. For 2019, we said goodbye to The Colony as it was removed from the lineup to make way for a new experience.
The two new mazes are The Wreckoning & Wastelands Penitentiary. The Wreckoning is a pirate themed maze which has replaced The Colony whilst Wastelands Penitentiary becomes a whole new area of the park, with the maze based on dangerous inmates taking control.
The park covers a large area which other than the mazes, includes a circus show, a new VR experience, funfair rides, multiple food & drink stands and much more. Known for its award winning roaming Actors, Tulleys have multiple different creatures roaming throughout the park, making nowhere safe. From the spooky twins to crazy Brian, they will make you scream and laugh as you make your way around the park. Music is also key to keep the atmosphere and the park has several stages setup with music acts keeping a great vibe from start to finish and help complete the full package that Tulleys Shocktober Fest offer!
Wastelands Penitentiary Area
Brand new for 2019, the park expands and introduces Wastelands Penitentiary. Home to the new maze, Tulleys have brought so much more to the table. A large shipping container area creates the inmates controlled land, taking us back to 1998. The facade is on par with the worldwide scare scene and is like nothing seen before in the UK. Several roaming actors play a part in Wastelands Penitentiary with them being the inmates with their rather large weapons, the guards who’ve have lost control & trying to survive and the seductive prisoners up in cages looking down at people passing by.
A small show occurs every 30 minutes which fills the area with a 360 degree immersive show, complete with lights, sound, actors and pyro! Overall, the themed area is nothing like we’ve seen before in the UK scare scene and believe this is incredible to pull off. To open a new interactive area with the scale of work required to pull of successfully, espically on opening night is amazing to see. The amount of roaming actors and the short show all combine together to create something remarkable and unforgettable.
Wastelands Penitentiary Maze
The brand new maze hosted within the new area is completely new and is using previously empty space. Built within multiple shipping containers, the maze takes you through several rooms of a real prison but taken over by the inmates. The Storyline follows perfectly from start to finish and as the maze develops as you go further through, the scares start to ramp up further and further. Each room being super well themed and matching the prison like infrastructure. Actors filled every room and for the whole production, probably includes the most amount of actors we’ve seen in a maze. The best part of Wastelands Penitentiary has to be ending. A large empty room has been transformed into a prison hall for the ending, filled with multiple different routes and a constant heavy strobe. With actors controlling every part of this space, this left us in awe. We did however spot an upstairs area which could potentially be unfinished, and will be interesting to see how this develops over this season. Overall, this maze will be a highlight of 2019 and most likely a favourite for many. Combined with the new area, you will struggle to find anything on the same scale of production.
Scare: 8/10 – Themeing & Storyline: 10/10 – Actors: 10/10
Join the hillbillies as you enter the family business. With not everything as it seems, you go through the garage to explore that the family business is just a cover up. The actors start quite tame as they explain a little of the storyline, which seems slightly different this year. However, the scares ramp up in the second half as endless bloody corridors are filled with angry chainsaw wielding maniacs, coming from all directions. The actors really make this maze and the energy levels really help with the impact of scares. The constant sound of chainsaws along with the flash lighting really create a terrifying attraction which must be experienced!
Scare: 10/10 – Themeing & Storyline: 9/10 – Actors: 9/10
The Village – Coven of 13
A maze based on witches and the forgotten souls. The maze starts quite uniquely with a smoke filled room along with lasers, actors and air cushions all the way along to push through. Shortly after, the maze kicks in with even more scares & screams as you enter through several rooms in a house and other wooden huts. The actors were using the spaces very cleverly and create some perfect impact scares which made most people scream. With not much changes being done on the themeing or storyline, we were pleased to see the maze has been slightly extended to add a new finale which we loved. A smoke filled room with actors screaming all around with you struggling to find them. A simple yet effective addition which is much creepier than its previous years.
Scare: 6/10 – Themeing & Storyline: 8/10 – Actors: 7/10
The Wreckoning is new for 2019, and is based on the doom and gloom of pirates, who have died and become murderous beings. People who are familiar with Tulleys will notice that the maze itself is essentially The Colony (which it replaced) with some updates and new scenes to fit in with the pirate theme. One of the longest mazes we’ve experienced, you find yourself twisting and turning through tight corridors and pitch black spaces, with plenty of open scenes allowing actors to interact better rather than traditional jump scares. Our highlight of this attraction has to be the new ‘harbour’ built with boats moored up and fantastic lighting which we really weren’t expecting to see mid way through the maze. Sadly we were quite disappointed with this attraction, and found there was way too many areas with nothing happening that didn’t even build suspense. Overall the maze is still worth experiencing as it is visually impressive being immersed into the pirate world, but don’t expect to be screaming the whole way through.
Scare: 5/10 – Themeing & Storyline: 8/10 – Actors: 5/10
Twisted Clowns 3D
Twisted Clowns 3D is Tulleys take on the clown genre, featuring very bright colours and the ‘3D’ glasses to make the experience extra trippy. Taking a journey through a funhouse which gets more twisted and dark the further you venture in, the inhabitants are absolutely bonkers! There’s plenty of opportunities for jump scares with sections of actors popping up from all directions, the clowns also love to play games and tell twisted tales. The bright colours and loud noises are really an attack on the senses, and makes you question what’s really there. Our highlights of this maze has to be some of the humorous dialogue heard throughout, and an actor on a bungee setup jumping out at us… Whilst it’s not the scariest maze, it’s a lot of fun!
Scare: 6/10 – Themeing & Storyline: 7/10 – Actors: 7/10
The Cellar with a scare factor of 9 is ready for another year of spooks with some serious changes back in 2018. 2019 doesn’t have any obvious changes, but the maze remains strong in a stronger & more competitive lineup. The actors were energetic, lively and crazy from start to finish and more importantly, in the cat & mouse maze section of the attraction. The themeing is still impressive the whole way through with the storyline remaining the same being based on creatures being kept away. The scares were still on the upper end of the scale for Tulleys however, we have seen them stronger last year. With that said, we are glad that The Cellar has not fallen behind or being forgotten about with the overall strong mazes in the 2019 lineup.
Scare: 8/10 – Themeing & Storyline: 8/10 – Actors: 7/10
Arguably one of Tulleys favourite and most popular attractions each year, Haunted Hayride was ready for the 2019 season. Taking you away from the traditional walk-through experience, Haunted Hayride takes you on a ride on a trailer on the back of a tractor through multiple different scenes based in the Horrorwood Film Studios set. Each year, the sets get changed and adjusted to keep things fresh, though we were very happy to see the dancing nuns make a return! Although the scares weren’t as strong as previous years, the ones that did happen were sharp and got us everytime, consistently. The actors played their characters perfectly, from the laughs, the scares to the creepiness at the back of the trailer. Overall, we think for another season the Haunted Hayride has come through as one of the top attractions for the scream park and you would be a fool to miss the one out!
Scare: 6/10 – Themeing & Storyline: 10/10 – Actors: 10/10
VIXI is Tulleys hooded maze and is normally one of the weakest attractions due to it’s style. With the attraction being mainly in darkness and not knowing where you are going, it mainly relies on alternative scare methods to get the scares from visitors. Last year, the actors managed to pump the scares for this type of maze however, we felt this year it kind of slipped from it’s high standard. Being of the weakest mazes of the night, we can still see it’s best features which many guests will find super terrifying and is a unique styled attraction for people who are afraid of the dark, being alone or hate sudden loud noises and the unpredictable nature.
Scare: 4/10 – Themeing & Storyline: 5/10 – Actors: 4/10
Creepy Cottage is one of Tulleys oldest attractions and is set in its own little location within the scream park arena. Based on a ‘Creepy Cottage’, the creatures inside have decided to cause some of the best scares we’ve seen in this cottage over the years! With this normally being the tamer mazes, we would have to disagree for 2019. The actors have really used the spaces to their advantage to create loud noises, short sharp scares and creepy horrific images that aren’t going to leave your mind until the next day. The themeing and storyline have not changed in a while, but we can see that as a good thing as it works with the creepy feel they are going with inside this cottage! With not knowing how long this attraction has left, we think you should enjoy the horror film feel you get inside this spooky haunt.
Scare: 6/10 – Themeing & Storyline: 6/10 – Actors: 7/10
Overall, Tulley’s have pulled off another incredible year to make them Europe’s best and biggest scream park. With 9 haunts and 1 circus show (arguably 2 shows if you include the mini immersive show in the Wasteland’s area), the night is jammed packed of thrills and spooks, that is growing ever so popular. Better than the 2018 season, you can see the whole event is well organised with a lot of time put in from all departments to make Shocktober Fest what is today. Wasteland’s Penitentiary shows what can be created with some time and dedication and we believe will be a huge success during their 2019 season.
Tulley’s Shocktober Fest is open on selected nights throughout October and early November with the only place to get tickets is through the official website. With 2019 being the biggest year so far, we would recommend getting fast-track or possibly even the VIP package, to make sure you can enjoy the whole event and not be restrained by time (also VIP allows unlimited access!).
Share your thoughts with us over on our socials if you experience Tulleys and if you agree with our ratings mentioned above during your visit… #WeDareYou!
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