Tulleys Shocktober Fest 2023

We recently visited Tulley’s Farm, nestled near Crawley in the southeast of England, for their renowned annual event, Shocktoberfest. This is one of the largest scare events in the UK, and it certainly lives up to the hype.

Tulley’s is a great example of what a UK scream park can be, featuring a diverse array of attractions, enthusiastic actors, captivating theming, and a wide selection of delicious food and beverages.

The sprawling site encompasses fairground rides, intriguing sideshows, and engaging roaming actors with exceptional improvisational skills that had us in fits of laughter throughout the evening.

A returning highlight this year was the Circus of Horrors, tucked away in the far corner of the site, and included in your ticket price. If you have a taste for the bizarre and captivating circus acts, it’s an absolute must-see. During our visit, the shows ran every hour.

Maze by Maze

The Creepy Cottage

We kicked off the night with The Creepy Cottage, a Tulley’s classic. This old building, haunted by the ghosts of past tenants, served as a fun and energetic starting point for the evening. Energetic actors and well-executed jump scares kept us on our toes.

The Village Coven of 13

Ever wondered what it feels like to be tried as a witch? This attraction immerses you in that chilling narrative. From trial to conviction, you’ll feel the witches’ pain, leading to a fabulous finale in keeping with the theme. Jump scares were effectively scattered throughout, and the relentless actors added to the suspense. This attraction cleverly blends indoor and outdoor areas for a thrilling experience.

The Cellar Imprisoned

Braving The Cellar meant encountering the inhabitants locked within. This maze offers a frantic experience, with actors surprising you from every angle. Dark corners and disorienting fenced sections keep you on edge as actors approach from all directions.


This attraction has a unique twist – you’re plunged into darkness wearing a hood. While I personally find such mazes challenging to enjoy, the actors put in their best effort to generate scares. Other members of our group were visibly spooked throughout, even though I found the experience a bit flat. One day, I’d love to see the hoods removed for a visually stunning representation of hell, as hooded mazes aren’t my cup of tea.

Electric Circus

Don’t dismiss this as just another clown maze. These electrically charged clowns offer a different experience. Transparent flaps cleverly reveal actors tormenting you while you listen to the safety briefing and beyond. The electric theme was woven throughout and found the changes worked well adding further dimension to the maze.

The Chop Shop

In The Chop Shop, chainsaws take center stage. The maze is divided into sections, with the first providing an engaging introduction to the storyline, complete with humorous lines from the actors. While chainsaws have become somewhat overdone, the first half of the maze made up for it with great interactions and actor engagement.

The Island

Venture into a land where the inhabitants are neither entirely human nor animal. This primarily outdoor attraction has a slightly slower pace, but when you encounter its characters, the scares hit hard, eliciting genuine jumps. The small tweaks made this year clearly enhanced the experience.

Doom Town

Doom Town left us in awe. We missed Shocktoberfest last year, and we regretted it. From the facade to every scene, this attraction is nothing short of breathtaking. You’ll explore a small town overrun by zombies, complete with a genuine tarmacked road at its heart. Actors expertly played their roles, capitalizing on hiding spots to deliver scare after scare. The slower-moving zombies compensated for their lack of speed with relentless uneasiness and chills. Honestly, it’s hard to pick a standout section – we loved every moment.

Wastelands Penitentiary

In Wastelands Penitentiary, the inmates have broken free. The well-themed prison areas are preceded by a chaotic strobe-lit section. Actors make clever use of the strobes to appear right in front of you, creating a disorienting experience. The spacious layout allows actors to attack from all angles. It’s always a great run, and this year was no exception.

Haunted Hayride – Route 666

Hop aboard the hayride for a journey through Horrorwood Studios. This attraction leans more toward humor, providing comic relief throughout the night. Scenes range from clowns to cowboys, each featuring amusing dialogue and interactions with the guests in the trailer. Some scenes take you by surprise, adding to the overall fun. It’s a genuinely enjoyable part of the evening and adds variety to the experience.

In conclusion, our night at Tulleys Shocktoberfest was nothing short of fantastic. The actors brought boundless energy, delivering continuous scares. And let’s not forget the immersive and awe-inspiring Doomtown.

Tulley’s Shocktoberfest runs on select nights throughout October, so don’t miss out – secure your tickets from their website now!

Tulleys Shocktober Fest 2021

This year Tulley’s are celebrating 25 years of screams. The event has grown considerably since the early days of the pumpkin festival and the inception of Creepy Cottage. Now it’s a month long event attracting 10s of thousands of guests every year ready to be scared out of their minds in the now festival like evening. 

Tulley’s Shocktoberfest runs from around 6pm through to midnight with mazes closing a little earlier. This long opening period is definitely needed if you want to enjoy all the mazes and other activities the event has on offer. 

As mentioned previously this event has a real festival vibe with 8 mazes, a haunted hayride, live bands, The Circus of Horrors, fairground rides plus a huge selection of food and drink on offer. The site is absolutely huge and it’s really worth exploring every corner. 

When we arrived a large queue had formed though despite this it didn’t last long and guests quickly got through security and the ticket office. 



We started with Hell-ements in the knowledge that it’s previously not been the strongest maze in the lineup. This is a hooded style attraction and because of this sadly the scares unfortunately don’t really land particularly well. The thing is the concept of the maze is great. The idea of experiencing different elements from a change of texture on the rope to different materials under foot and the varying temperature conditions make for a great concept but with the addition of hoods and what feels like a walk in a circle unfortunately this attraction is a little forgettable. We think with the removal of the hood plus a change to the route you could create quite a good attraction but at this time it is unfortunately not particularly memorable.

Creepy Cottage

Things start to improve very quickly with our second maze Creepy Cottage. A classic attraction at Tulleys and one with really great theming. Tulleys list this attraction as being the lowest on their scare factor and we would agree. It’s a very traditional attraction with one scripted section where the actor was able to successfully improvise with some of the difficult guests who were added to our group. This was entertaining and really well placed. Scares were light in the attraction but even with this it was a fun run through of a well themed maze.

The Village Coven of 13

From here on the mazes start to get a lot more interesting. The Village Coven of 13 is no exception. Each area has something different and interesting. There is a fantastic use of smoke machines, large open spaces, waist-high claustrophobia tunnels and lasers. All creating interesting effects scene after scene. The actors were fantastic really making the most of the sets. Especially in the more disorientating areas the actors cleverly distracted us or intentionally cornered us adding additional bonus scares throughout the experience. This maze is very memorable and always stands out for having fun and interesting sections that are enjoyable time and time again. 

The Cellar Imprisoned

This is an attraction that could be easy to miss tucked away to the left of the main entrance. We would definitely recommend not skipping it. We had one of our strongest runs of the night in here. The attraction starts with creepy scenes that feel like being led down to a cellar. The sudden change into the cell area was very noticeable and it is here where the actors really worked well with each other landing scare after scare. They ranged from the traditional impact scare through to more intimidating movements, blocking off routes and having fun with our group. There is one element that unfortunately wasn’t working on our visit but once fixed will make for a fun additional element. 

Twisted Clowns

Always a fun maze with bright colours disorientating 3D effects and actors who aren’t afraid to improvise and wreak havoc on the unsuspecting guests. This maze from start to finish managed to land scares with innovative improvisations. The 3D effect really makes the scenery pop and gives an added dimension that actors use really well. There are a number of really cool set pieces too that help the actors accomplish scares in exciting ways. The design of the maze also allows one actor to scare you multiple times which is great to see within this and other mazes at Tulleys. 

The Island

New for this year this is a slight retheme of what was previously called The Wreckoning. This is a long maze and we feel the length of the maze for once isn’t a positive. Due to the size you find a lot of dead patches without much happening. That being said this attraction was an improvement on 2019 with a storyline that was more engaging, telling the story of experiments on animals that turned them into human like creatures. The small changes to scenes were good and added to the new story. We feel that with the addition of a few more actors to fill in the gaps this could be a really good maze. The theming and costumes were great with some fabulous detail in the faces of the animal/human hybrids. 

Chop Shop

Chainsaws, chainsaws and more CHAINSAWS. This is the primary theme of this maze. It starts pretty traditional with a number of set scenes around an old car mechanics shop, all actors landing a few scares and interacting well with the guests. Leading to the core concept of the maze. The chainsaws. Scene after scene you are confronted by one, two maybe three chainsaw wielding actors coming at you from all angles and using the set to increase the sheer noise of the machines. The actors were relentless as we scurried to find the exit.

Wastelands Penitentiary

It’s always tricky to find words to explain the sheer scale of this attraction, the facade being a whole stage in itself. This stage is used to display a regular fire, light and dance show that really adds to the immersion of the area. One small thing to note about this area compared to last year was the unfortunate timing of the drummers. We found that with them being slightly out of time it detracted from the full impact of the show. They definitely improved slightly when we watched the show towards the end of the night so hope this element continues to improve as the season progresses. The drum section could also be possibly be improved with the steel drums having a layer of UV paint or similar so that when hit the splash of the liquid explodes causing a fantastic effect every time 

Now onto the maze! An absolutely stand out attraction with great theming fantastic interaction and really intimidating characters throughout. There are fun elements where the inmates are able to personalise a few scares which works really well and could really put people on edge. The strobe effects are used really well with actors using the light to land scares with perfect timing. Due to the sheer quality of the majority of the maze it did however make the finale feel like something was missing. The end of the maze seems to just fizzle out and we feel with a small adjustment to the final scene actors could be used to great effect to leave the guests running for the exit. Saying this the maze is definitely a highlight and worth going through multiple times if you have the opportunity.

Horrorwood Haunted Hayride

This is not a maze but a really fun enjoyable haunted hayride style attraction taking you through an old film set. Each scene you encounter takes you through one of many different classic horror tropes. Each scene had really fun actor interactions and strong effects. For us there were two standout sections one with the pickup truck and the other with the prisoner. These along with the other elements made for a really enjoyable ride through the wooded area of the site. 

Street Theatre and Side Shows

This event doesn’t just have scare mazes and a hayride. It has a fantastic lineup of street theatre. You can’t walk anywhere without bumping into a different character. From the menacing Kurb and Kontrol to The Nurses each set of characters bring their own fun interactions and photo opportunities. 

The site also has live music and performances from the circus of horrors. While we didn’t personally get a chance to experience either of these, the option definitely adds to the enjoyment of the night and gives the event a great atmosphere. 

Finally we come to the food and drink offering. The site has decent lager, cider and other drinks plus a huge selection of food, the pizza being a standout for us.

The staff around the site seemed to be in high spirits and really engaging with every interaction. It’s great to see the staff clearly enjoying what they do and making the guests feel welcome through the event. 

Overall Tulleys Shocktoberfest is a fantastic night out with fun scares, enjoyable entertainment and delicious food. We can’t wait to see what the next 25 years have in store. This event is running through to November and is definitely worth a trip so if you are looking for some fun Halloween scares it’s absolutely worth checking out Tulleys Shocktoberfest.

Tulleys Shocktober Fest 2019

Tulleys Shocktoberfest, outside of theme park Halloween events, is just about the only other Halloween event I knew existed 6 months ago, purely due to their adverts on the tube in London every year. In my naivety I’d always dismissed going as I always thought ‘how could a few mazes in a field on a farm be any good’. Obviously I was massively mistaken and despite knowing a lot more about Tulleys now than I did then, I was still taken aback by the sheer size, scale and quality of the event.

For newbies like myself that don’t already know Tulleys Shocktoberfest, near Crawley in West Sussex is massive. There are 8 traditional walking scare mazes, a haunted hayride, a short circus attraction, two live music stages, numerous roaming street theatre actors, add-on fair ground rides, midway games and attractions, two bars, and a vast selection of food options available. It’s like a mini-seasonal theme park that comes to life every Halloween.

Unbeknownst to me at the time of booking, I was going to be there for the press and VIP opening night event. Public tickets, like my own, are still available in limited numbers for particular evenings. Being an old fart, I didn’t expect to recognise anyone, however seeing some posts on various social networks afterwards I was able to go ‘Oh, I saw that person’ or more often ‘Oh, I know that person, but don’t remember seeing them’. Not surprising really given the size of the venue.

Street Theatre and non- Mazes

The numerous, differently themed roaming street theatre actors were all brilliant, from the superbly creepy twin girls, to the Wastelands area Mad Max-esque killers, and my favourites Austrian Hans and his pet Goatie. Great variety and a number of them kept people at Shocktoberfest entertained and on their toes throughout the evening.

Circus of Horrors was an entertaining, reasonably lengthy show that is performed in a traditional big top several times through the evening. I saw the 9pm show which was entertaining and disgusting in equal measure. My highlights were the contortionist and the acrobatic group. My low light was a bit too much to see of the Mongolian laughing ‘boy’s’ anatomy. Based on the performance I saw if you’re struggling for time this could be something to be missed out on. Scare Directory will be visiting again later in the season so if this changes we’ll let you know.

I didn’t experience any of them myself, but there are a few fairground rides, some traditional midway games, static zombie paintball and a VR experience available for an additional fee. For free though there are two very entertaining live music stages within Shocktoberfest. Perfect for if you want to get your groove on.

The Mazes

It’s worth mentioning, that all the mazes have some great elements, scares, and all have quality design, make up, sounds and costumes with very clearly passionate and engaging actors within them. Obviously there’s always going to be an amount of subjectivity about the individual maze reviews given a particular run through. I had opted for a VIP XScream Unlimited Pass which meant that I could fast track any maze as many times as I wanted. Even with the practically walk-on fast track queue lines, I could only manage to do repeat runs of three of the mazes. If I’d have been more single minded I could have done a couple more repeats, but I was more than happy to spend time soaking up the amazing festival atmosphere at the event.

For those that were on the most popular XScream Pass, offering a single run through of everything once in normal queue lines, I can only imagine it would have been an absolute mission to cover everything. That said queue lines on a Saturday opening night didn’t seem too extreme, topping out at 25 minutes for Wastelands Penitentiary. I imagine these queue times may get longer at peak periods closer to Halloween.

Twisted Clowns

This was my first maze at Shocktoberfest and my first ever 3D maze. You don 3D glasses at the start and enter the very trippy and neon clown based maze. My singular small group experience was good, but not great. The actors were good value and the 3D effects suitably fun. As a glasses wearer normally, adding the 3D specs was a bit uncomfortable. If I’d had my contacts in I’m sure I’d have had a different opinion.

The Chop Shop Garage

I did two run-throughs of Chop Shop and both were superb, plenty of actors, great theming, design, props, makeup, and great pacing. My second favourite of the night and not one for anyone with an aversion to chainsaws. Memorably on my first run through I ended up in a small group of five with a really big bloke with some face tattoos. I didn’t have a clue at the time, but a quick google afterwards informed me that he was Rag’n’bone Man

The Wreckoning

This was a bit of a mixed bag for me to be honest. There were some fun scares, really impressive sets and designs in parts and an interesting original concept. There were a few negatives though. In parts the theming and design looked a little poor and in some instances were non-existent e.g. walking through a fog filled bare shipping container or the very anachronistic finale. This felt like a really long maze and the positive elements were great. With a few tweaks I’m sure this maze can be great too.


So, the hooded maze. Like many people I’m not a fan of hooded mazes, so this was never going to rank highly on my list of Shocktoberfest’s mazes. Despite this there were some fun and entertaining elements to the maze and the actors genuinely creeped me out at times. Despite the high points, my most memorable moments were the frequent apologies for bumping in to the lad in front of me.

Hollywood Haunted Hayride

My first hayride and it was a fun change of pace to the usual walking mazes. Nothing particularly scary, but a whole lot of fun as you’re slowly driven around the haunted Hollywood sets. One particular scare stood out and the actors were great fun as they terrorised our group throughout our journey.

The Village: Coven of 13

To use the old vernacular this was a game of two halves for me. The second half was much stronger, but I did feel a little let down by the ending to be honest. First half had its moments, but didn’t quite hit the high points for me despite the actors best efforts. I’m also not a massive fan of the specific element used extensively at the beginning of this maze. Used sparingly it can be fun, but for me it went on way too long. The lighting and fog effects at this part though were amazing.

Creepy Cottage

Solo run through, and sadly had a few hiccups with actor resets. That said they were all good value despite those issues. Would have been nice to have experienced a clean run through. Solid maze with nice theming and sets.

Wastelands Penitentiary

Wow! I know I’m not the only person to throw superlatives at this all new small area and maze, but what Tulleys have introduced with Wastelands is seriously impressive. The entrance to the area itself is immense and within it features a really cool half hourly show. The maze itself is stunning, everything is on point. Top class set design, make up, costumes, a suitably intense walk through the admin offices of the jail before ending up in the frankly amazing cell block area. This was ramped up to 11. Awesome job and wish I could have got round it more than twice.

The Cellar: Imprisoned

Almost missed this one. I had to check my map and found this unexplored maze near the entrance to the event. Another solid maze, no faults, but nothing particularly out standing. As usual great set designs, props, make up and costumes for the game actors.


Absolutely brilliant evening at Tulleys Shocktoberfest. Highly recommended even if you have to brave the M25 to get there. It’s a massive event with tons to see and do with a great atmosphere throughout the whole site. I’m very happy to eat humble pie about my misconceptions of this event prior to visiting.

Tulleys Shocktoberfest runs on selected dates through to the finale and firework night on Saturday 2nd November

Scare Directory
Author: Scare Directory