Halloween Horrors at the Westgate Museum

Press Release: 03/10/2007

Darkness greets our ancient streets,
As something horrid this way creeps.

Stories tell of silver ghosts,
And all the things we fear the most,
A knock upon the Westgate door,
The creaking of the wooden floor,
The echoed sounds of mystery,
Of things you hear but cannot see.

But children do not frightened be,
of eerie tales from history,
For you are brave and do not scream,
You’re not afraid of Halloween!


Come along to the ancient Westgate Museum on Halloween for a spine tingling storytelling session…if you dare!

The storyteller, Mike O’Leary, will be recounting ghostly goings-on and bringing grisly tales of horror to life on Wednesday 31st October 2007. 

You will be taken up the shadowy stone staircase and through the creaking door to the atmospheric upper chamber, once used as a prison. The bravest will then venture on upwards for more frightful tales on the dark Westgate rooftop.

Sher Kent, Visitor Services Manager for Winchester City Council’s museums service, said: “Halloween Horrors in the Westgate is part of our year long family events programme in the city’s museums. These spooky storytelling sessions are very popular, but we only have limited space for 12 children at each session. Please book early to avoid disappointment! If you would like to get into the Halloween spirit, why not come dressed in creepy Halloween costumes? There will be a prize for the scariest costume.”

Cllr Patricia Stallard, Portfolio Holder for Culture, Heritage and Sport, added: “It is great to see the Westgate’s unique historic atmosphere being used to such good effect.  This is the latest in an ever-expanding repertoire of enjoyable family events in our museums designed to introduce new audiences to the history of our district.”

The sessions are suitable for school aged children and their parents. Places are limited, so pre-booking is essential. The event is free and can be booked in advance by ringing the museum on 01962 869 864.  All children under the age of 12 years old must be accompanied by an adult.

Each storytelling session starts from outside, then up the stone steps to the upper chamber room and finally onto the roof. Each session will last for one hour and they will begin at the following times:

Session 1: 4.30pm

Session 2: 5.30pm (the gate will be getting darker as twilight approaches!)

Parents are welcome to accompany their children if needed.