Unfortunately due to this horrendous bug we have had to miss so much this past week! Thankfully we have some amazing friends who love Halloween just as much as we do so we are living vicariously through The Hoopers for this post!
Brockbushes Halloween Pumpkin Patch
Our Halloween themed week continued as we headed off to Brockbushes to their pumpkin patch. If you haven’t been before, Brockbushes is a family owned farm shop just off the A69 (on the big roundabout) around 5 minutes from Hexham, so from my home in Gosforth it took around 20 minutes on a nice easy straight road. It’s pretty easy to spot and usually is marked by a giant strawberry in the summer, as much of their business is fruit picking!
As we pulled in, the car park was heaving so we ended up in the overspill on the grass. I’d read the review on Sprog on the Tyne’s blog a few days ago and Caroline’s advice to wear wellies was much appreciated -‐ it was pretty darn muddy up at Brockbushes.
The Farm shop is pretty extensive with a wide range of home made cakes, pies, local cheeses and goodies like olives and fresh bread on display. There is loads of veg too, which looked very organic -‐ some of it was on a giant scale!!
We found a seat in the café and ordered a few snacks to keep us going like corned beef pie, ham and cheese toasties for the girls and a piece of key lime pie. The corned beef pie arrived and looked good but it had been nuked in the microwave, which made the pastry all gooey -‐ not pleasant. It was swopped easily for a piece of quiche, which was much better! The key lime pie was awesome though and up with some of the best we’ve had in Florida.
Soon it was time to head for our 12.45pm slot at the Halloween event and were given our tickets from the counter in the shop. We pottered up to the marquee following a family only to be told we needed to find the pink witch back in the farm shop -‐ oops!! Maybe the guy at the till could have mentioned this! The crowds were gathering and I reckon there were around 60 people booked in for the time slot.
We meandered up to the marquee along the path, which was decorated in some spooky signs, and witches hats up the hill. I’m not sure if the event had been oversold or there had been an error, but there weren’t really enough spaces for the kids to get a seat -‐ the place was heaving!! As we entered the girls were given little pots of fairy dust, which would be needed later on in the patch.
Soon the good witch (the pink witch was the bad one we later learned) took to the small stage and began singing Ghostbusters. The rest of the show consisted of some jokes, ventriloquism and a spooky story. I think the show was a bit too young for my girls (5 and 9) and think under 5’s would have been more engaged. It really was a bit surreal in parts and I wondered where the story was going. Especially when one of the puppet characters yelled out ‘ooh there’s Fiz from Coronation Street’ to a mother at the front with curly red hair!! She looked a bit embarrassed and my Mam joked she was glad they hadn’t shouted out “ooh look, there’s Deirdre Barlow’ to her ha ha!
We exited the tent from a side door and were led onto the patch, which was great fun. The kids were asked to sprinkle their fairy dust onto the pumpkins. Imogen set about searching for the biggest pumpkin she could find on the patch and came out with a whooper.
At £6.95 per child (adult goes free) the patch was pretty good value and it was a nice experience for the girls to select their own from the field. They had fun getting muddy in the hedgerows and although they aren’t actually grown here it reminded me a lot of the patches you see on American movies!
The experience lasted around half an hour and as we had some time to spare we headed up to Hexham for the rest of the day for a little retail therapy and look around this pretty market town. My mam came away with some new baubles, a wreath and Imogen picked a little sign saying ‘Dreaming of a White Christmas’. Now Halloween is over we can look forward to the next festivity!
Thank you so much Catherine and The Hoopers for filling in for us at the last second, it sounds as though it was something our girls would have loved and I will make sure we stock up on antivirus meds this time next year to ensure we make it!
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