The Hoppings is the worlds largest travelling fun fair that parks up in Newcastle for over a week during June each year. First held on the Town Moor in 1882 and with over 300 attractions including rides, amusements and fairground spectacles there really is something for the whole family.
When we were invited to the Discovery Museum in Newcastle to see an exhibition to celebrate 135 years of the Hoppings we popped along not knowing what to expect. Displayed until the 1st of October and free to enter this really is a step back in time!
On arrival we were handed a bag of old pennies and shown through into a room that housed over 50 vintage coin operated amusement machines from throughout the years. Some of the machines are scattered around the museum too so do keep your eyes open as you walk around! You can purchase 5 old pennies for £1 at the entrance of the exhibition.
There were all kinds of amusement machines including pinball, shooting gallery, a cat band that sang and played musical instruments, even an olden day version of the grab machine where you had to drop in a penny and it pushed an arm to see if it would knock candy through the door!
The girls loved the carousel horse and we have promised we will take them to The Hoppings this year so they can have a go on a real merry go round!
A few of the games were set up where you got to play together, seeing who could get to the top of a tree first, who could get their helicopter in the air first – the winner always won back their penny too so bonus!
It was lovely to see some games have stood the test of time and the girls always have to try their hand at hook a duck whenever we are at a fair or the amusements!
All around the room were little snippits of what life was like throughout the history of the Hoppings, old photographs that showed their set up and how things have changed over the years. The one thing I absolutely loved about all of the amusements was that they were so innocent – these days so many rides and games are based on adrenalin and reality but these historical pieces actually brought back a little bit of innocence.
We were invited along to experience the exhibition. All views and opinions are my own and genuine.