Where to find Bonfire Night fun across South Devon
SAFE family fun is the emphasis for fire officers aiming to keep the Torquay community safe this Bonfire Night.
With the majority of firework-related injuries happening at private parties held at this time of year, Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service is urging residents to enjoy one of the area’s organised displays instead.
Crew manager and prevention officer for community safety Brian Cappello said: “Organised events keep the community safe and enable people to come together to enjoy Bonfire Night.
“As a fire service we would advocate people attend organised displays rather than holding their own – it’s safer and will be a better display.”
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Watcombe Primary School's popular display, which this year is taking place on Monday, November 5, is run in partnership with Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service and Safer Communities Torbay.
Mr Cappello said there is a great deal of work behind the scenes to plan the event, organising stewards and ensuring there are first-aiders ready to respond to any incidents, and there will be a team of volunteers helping the evening run smoothly.
This year, as part of its safety campaign, the fire service has persuaded the area’s major supermarkets to display posters on fire safety and the dangers of sparklers, and has distributed around 3,000 leaflets containing the Firework Code to schools, colleges and other organisations.
For more information on keeping safe this Bonfire Night, and the Firework Code, visit www.dsfire.gov.uk.
Here are 10 ideas for family fun in and around Torquay this Halloween and Bonfire Night:
1) Babbacombe Model Village will be getting a spooky makeover, when the gardens are filled with miniature Halloween scenes . The attraction will be opening its doors from 10.30am until 10pm,when after dark the illuminations and special effects will bring the displays to life. Soak up the eerie atmosphere on a lantern-lit Workshop of Horrors tour, taking you through the woods where some surprises will be waiting. Those brave enough can even join a “tomb-raiding” dig, with prizes for the best finds. The events run until October 31, go to www.babbacombemodelvillage.co.uk for more details.
Babbacombe Model Village, Hampton Avenue, Babbacombe, Torquay, TQ1 3LA. Tel: 01803 315315.
2) Halloween comes to an elegant country home as the National Trust’s Coleton Fishacre hosts a ghostly treasure hunt. While parents enjoy the sea views and landscaping, sharp-eyed youngsters can look out for clues hidden around the 30-acre garden, which will lead them to a spooky surprise. The free hunt will be held from October 27- October 31. Normal admission charges to the estate apply, with a family ticket plus Gift Aid costing £24.20. Visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk/coleton-fishacre or call 01803 842382 for more information.
Coleton Fishacre, Brownstone Road, Kingswear, TQ6 0EQ. Tel: 01803 842382.
3) If dinosaurs alone aren’t scary enough, then those at Torquay Dinosaur World are now accompanied by ghosts and ghouls. During half-term, the lights go out at 2.30pm and visitors can take part in a Halloween-themed quiz to track down the horrors that are haunting the prehistoric creatures, guided only by torch-light. The hunt is on every day from Saturday, October 27, to Sunday, November 4, from 11am, with last entry at 3pm. Entry is £5.95 per person. Visit www.torquaysdinosaurworld.co.uk for more information.
Torquay's Dinosaur World, 3 Victoria Parade, Torquay, TQ1 2BB. Tel: 01803 29877
4) Take an eerie trip to a bygone era, when Bygones invites families to join a Victorian Halloween treasure hunt. The attraction, which celebrates Victorian times, will be turning back the clock for visitors as usual this half-term but this time with a spooky twist. Youngsters will be on the trail of the Bygones ghost, adults can try to solve the mystery of the body in the parlour and all can enjoy some scary tales. Children are urged to dress up in their creepiest costumes and there will be a chance to win some Halloween goodies. All activities are included in the usual admission price, with a family ticket for two adults and two children priced at £25. The activities run from October 27 to November 4, with doors opening at 10am and last entry at 5pm before the attraction shuts at 6pm. Visit www.bygones.co.uk for more details.
Bygones, Fore Street, St Marychurch, Torquay, TQ1 4PR. Tel: 01803 326108.
5) A suitably spooky tale will be staged at The Little Theatre this Halloween night. Wyrd Sisters is adapted from the book by Terry Pratchett and features witches, kings, plotting and sorcery, with shades of Macbeth. The production is by the Tadpole Youth Theatre group and will open on October 31 at 7.30pm and runs until November 3. Tickets are £7 or £5 and are available from the box office on 01803 299330. Visit www.toadslittletheatre.co.uk for more information.
The Little Theatre, St Marks Road, Meadfoot, Torquay, TQ1 2EL. Tel: 01803 299330.
6) If Halloween isn’t Halloween without a party, then you’re in luck. Torquay’s Riviera International Conference Centre will be hosting its popular children’s Halloween bash from 5.30pm on October 31, complete with disco, spooky fancy dress, competitions and games. As well as food, the bar will also be open for mum and dad while youngsters enjoy the fun provided by With a Difference Entertainments. Booking is essential on 01803 206333, with tickets priced at £4.25 and £7.50 with a meal for non-members and £3.25 and £6.25 with a meal for centre members. Adults pay £1 or £5.50 with a meal. For more information, visit www.rivieracentre.co.uk.
Riviera Centre, Chestnut Avenue, Torquay, TQ2 5LZ. Tel: 01803 299992.
7) Agatha Christie’s holiday home will be filled with magic and mystery this Halloween. All budding witches and wizards are invited to Greenway on October 31 to tackle a themed trail, let their imaginations run wild with some spell-binding story-telling and have a magical makeover with some face painting. With wands at the ready, dress in your most magical outfit and pick up a trail leaflet from reception. Visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk/greenway for more information
Greenway, Greenway Road, Galmpton, near Brixham, TQ5 0ES. Tel: 01803 842382.
8) Families will have a blast at this year’s Watcombe Primary School and Community Association fireworks display. Last year’s event attracted around 1,000 spectators and now the display returns on Monday, November 5, at the school’s grounds. Gates open at 5.30pm, with the display planned for 7.15pm. Tickets are £3 for over-16s, £2 for children aged three to 16 and free admission for under-threes. A family ticket for two adults and three children, available in advance, is £9. There will be plenty of refreshments, including hot dogs, burgers, soup and coffee to keep the watching crowds warm and sparklers will be on sale. No fireworks can be brought onto the site and under-16s must be accompanied by an adult.
Watcombe Primary School, Moor Lane, Torquay, Devon, TQ2 8NU.
9) Bonfire Night traditions are alive and well at a local primary school, which will be putting guys on the fire during its celebrations. Sherwell Valley Primary School is holding its fireworks display on Monday, November 5, from 6pm. The show attracted hundreds last year and people buying their tickets in advance (adult £4, child £3, family ticket - two adults and three children - £8.50) will be able to enter the site through the fast-track entrance. Tickets on the night cost £10. Guys go on the fire at 6.30pm and the fireworks will be set off at 7.15pm. Dogs and sparklers are not allowed on the school premises.
Sherwell Valley Primary School, Hawkins Avenue, Torquay, TQ2 6ES. Tel: 01803 613296.
10) Fireworks and food will be followed by live music at Paignton Rugby Club;s bonfire celebration on Saturday, November 3. The grounds at Queens Park, Queens Road, will host the fireworks display, with organisers planning to light the first rocket at 7.30pm, followed by the display at 7.45pm. Warming food will be available on the evening, including burgers, jacket potatoes and pasties, as well as hot and cold drinks and refreshments from the bar. Live music will begin at 8.30pm. The family night out is being sponsored by WBW Solicitors, Bays Brewery and the Firework Shop, Paignton. Visit www.pitchero.com/clubs/paigntonjuniorrfc for more information.
Paignton RFC, Queens Park, Queens Road, Paignton, TQ4 6HA.