Family friendly

The best kids events in Derbyshire this October half term

Here’s your roundup of the spookiest events happening over the October half term school holidays in Derbyshire. Typically, the October half term in Derbyshire schools runs from Saturday 22 October 2022 to Sunday 30 October 2022 – but do check directly with your own school as holidays and INSET days do vary from school to school.

All of these events have been advertised as family friendly and suitable for the whole family (unless specific ages are mentioned). For adult Halloween activities please see my general What’s On guide as well.

Events are organised into ones that are happening daily (or most days) throughout the half term week and then a day-by-day calendar.

Where admission prices apply, I’ve generally quoted the price for a family ticket so you can compare events at a glance. All information provided in good faith but please do double check details, especially before making a special journey.

Click here for the best pumpkin patches in Derbyshire

a mother carving a pumpkin while the children are watching - Halloween arts and crafts - October half term in Derbyshire
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Click here for 40 Things to do in Derbyshire for families

Halloween events on daily throughout the October half term school holidays in Derbyshire 

Halloween Festival at Bluebell Dairy, Derby

From 2nd October to 30th October 2022

A pumpkin picking patch with tens of thousands of pumpkins, Halloween trail, and daily spooky shows and lots of spooky activities including: The Secret Life of Bugs, Monster Mash Bash, Piggy Apple bobbing, Spooky Sheep race, fancy dress parade and ghoulish play barn. Don’t miss the Halloween Ice Scream flavours! And all the usual farm fun. Limited tickets available to book online priced at adults £11.95, child £13.50 which includes one free pumpkin. Under 1s free.

Halloween activities at Matlock Farm Park

Daily through October half term

A daily spooky trail to follow in the enchanted forest, with prop-based sets and riddles galore! Matlock Farm Park also have their own pumpkin patch, for children to pick their own pumpkin (for which there is a small charge) using our little wheelbarrows and carve at our carving station.

During half term there’s live fun (not scary!) Halloween characters at set times of the day (check exact dates directly with Matlock Farm Park), daily Witch Wendolyn’s craft workshops for children, Matlock’s legendary headless horseman making an appearance late afternoon as the light goes down and prizes for best fancy dress!

Plus all the usual animal delights including sheep racing, small animal handling, meerkat talks, wallaby encounters and ferret racing, plus indoor and outdoor play areas. Book here.

Half term Halloween fun at Chatsworth Farmyard, near Bakewell

Daily through October half term

Various creepy Halloween themed activities such as visiting Chatsworth’s pumpkin patch to and choose your own pumpkin to carve and decorate, Halloween themed face painting and spooky Halloween themed crafts. If you’re feeling brave take a mysterious journey on the spooky tractor and trailer ride (small additional charge applies). Activities throughout each day, check the noticeboard on arrival for specific timings. Plus all the usual daily activities, such as animal feeding and milking demonstrations – read what to expect at Chatsworth farmyard and playground here. Book tickets.

Halloween Trail at Rosliston Forestry Centre, South Derbyshire

Daily throughout October half term, 10am – 3pm

Explore the trail using clues and activities to learn about wildlife, myths and legends and look out for a spooky surprise or two!!  Trail map available from Reception/The Shop daily. £2 per trail and entrance to Rosliston is free. Car parking from £1.50 or £4 for the day.

(Un)Natural Trail at Shipley Country Park, Heanor

Sunday 23rd to Sunday 30th October 2022, 10.30am to 3.30pm

Follow the Halloween Trail and search for the clues that aid learning about spooky nature and receive a sweet treat! Fancy dress welcome. Trail is approximately 1 mile so perfect for little legs. £2 per child. No booking required. Turn up any time. Self-led activity.

Wizards and Spooks 2022, Midland Railway, Butterley

Daily through October half term

Halloween at the Midland Railway – Butterley is a very ‘spooktacular’ affair. Heritage trains operate for the Derbyshire schools’ autumn half term holiday. On arrival at Butterley you will find a specially decorated Booking Hall in the Station – enter if you dare!  This is your gateway to a wizard competition, railway museum and much more. Trains depart from Butterley at: 11.00am, 11.50am, 12.40pm, 2.00pm, 2.50pm & 3.45pm.

Spooky Potions Trail at Ilam Park

Daily through October half term

Imaginary potion making at Ilam Park. Venture deep into the woods, to come across spooky stations that will test your nature detective skills. £2 per child, no admission charges, NT members park for free, for non-members it is £4.50 for 4 hours and £6 for all day. No booking required.

Halloween Week at Thornbridge

24th to 30th October 2022

A week of spooktacular activities at Thornbridge Hall including fancy dress competitions, ghost stories in the secret library, Halloween hunts and freaky food! Access to Halloween activities is included with standard garden entry. Family tickets £18. Book early for 20% off.

The Spooky Tunnels at Calke Abbey

Daily through October half term

Creep underground into the spooky tunnels, decorated especially for Halloween. Free event but normal admission charges apply. Family ticket £17.50 or free admission for National Trust members.

Halloween half-term fun at Bolsover Castle

Daily through October half term

Gather your little monsters for a ghoulishly good-value family day out. Follow the trail to solve creepy clues and gather round to listen to spooky stories.

Halloween activity included in general admission prices and free to English Heritage members. Family tickets £36.90. Booking not essential but recommended for the best price and guaranteed entry.

Heights of Abraham Halloween Half Term Fun

Saturday 22nd to Sunday 30th October 2022

Enjoy scary scarecrow and pumpkin decorations & Halloween themed treats and visit the Halloween Grotto in the Rutland Cavern where you will join Lady Lettuce Lavine on a quest through the newly discovered time portal to hunt for the ‘sleeping spirit’! Activity costs an additional £4.50 on top of regular admission costs (family tickets are £69 in advance) but includes a gift from the treasure chest!

Crich Tramway Museum Autumn Fun

Monday 24th October 2022 to Thursday 27th October 2022

Four days of family fun (Monday – Thursday) with creative activities, storytelling and entertainment. Seasonal crafts in the Halloween Hut, halloween show, face painting and balloon modelling. See website for full information. Family ticket £44 and includes 12 months free return visits.

Creepy Crafts flatlay - October half term in Derbyshire
Creepy crafts at Denby Pottery Village

Spooky Halloween fun at Denby Pottery Village

Until Sunday 30th October 2022

Hourly themed children’s craft sessions between 9 am – 4 pm.
Lots of creative Halloween fun in Denby Craft Studio. Choose from one of the following activities on the day: Spooky Stones, Creepy Clay Craft. £7 per child. Book here.

Click here for the best pumpkin patches in Derbyshire

crop child demonstrating decorated halloween pumpkin - October half term in Derbyshire
Photo by Charles Parker on

Halloween Calendar for October half term

Mrs Cackle and the Enchanted Pumpkin

Saturday 22nd October, 3pm at Adam’s Happy Hens, Chesterfield
Sunday 30th October, 10am at West Studios

Interactive storytelling from Hatchlings Pomegranate Youth Theatre, aimed at children under 7 years old. Tickets required.

Event at Adam’s Happy Hens costs £7.50 per child and includes a hot chocolate. Under 1s are free. Buy tickets (cash only) from farm shop at Adam’s Happy Hens.

West Studios event is £6 per child with one free adult and £3 per additional adult, buy tickets online.

Nature Tots, Derbyshire Wildlife Trust at Carsington Water

Monday 24th October, 10am – 12pm

Nature based, outdoor playgroup. £6 per child aged between 0-5 years. Last entry is 11am. No booking required. Free parking.

Halloween Family Bushcraft, Carsington Water Visitor Centre

Monday 24th October (also on Wednesday 26th October), 1.30pm -4pm     

Basic bushcraft skills with a Halloween twist! Includes fire-lighting to make your magic potion and you will use tools to make something magical to take home too! All so dress for the weather. £10 per person and needs booking.

Crafty Tuesday: Spooky Toy Theatres, Derby

Tuesday 25th October 2022, 10am – 12pm

Learn a new crafting skill at Pickford’s House in Derby. Make yourself at home in this spectacular Georgian townhouse, surrounded by unique objects and let your creativity flow. This session delves into the tiny world of toy theatres and making theatres with a spooky twist. Drop in session, no booking required. FREE but donations welcome.

Halloween Family Bushcraft, Carsington Water Visitor Centre

Wednesday 26th October, 1.30pm -4pm     

Basic bushcraft skills with a Halloween twist! Includes fire-lighting to make your magic potion and you will use tools to make something magical to take home too! All so dress for the weather. £10 per person and needs booking.

Dusk Walk, Carsington Water

Wednesday 26th October 2022, 6pm -7.30pm

A group wellbeing walk followed by time around the fire with a hot drink and a toasted marshmallow! Watch the day drift away as the light fades and sun melts into the horizon. Listen as nature prepares to sleep and becomes active. £6 per person and needs booking.

Spooky Thursday at High Peak Junction Visitor Centre

Thursday 27th October 2022, 10am to 4pm

FREE activity. Prepare for Halloween and try your hand at making a large circular knitting cobweb. Take part in a Halloween trail and collect an autumn tree seed to plant and grow. No booking required, drop in any time.

Shine a Light, Cromford Mills

Thursday 27th and Friday 28th October 2022, 6.30-10 pm

An after-dark experience for the whole family, bringing together awe-inspiring animations and live musical performances in stunning audio-visual displays centred around the themes of climate change and water. Adults £9, children £6. Book in advance.

Halloween Family Fun Quiz at the Batch House, Chesterfield

Thursday 27th October 2022, from 6pm

Family friendly Halloween themed quiz with a Harry Potter round. Fancy dress encouraged. Free parking (just make sure to register your details – see posters in venue).

Bonfire and Fireworks at Chatsworth

Friday 28th and Saturday 29th October 2022, 6.00pm – 9.30pm

Taking place in the garden, we’ll be lighting a blazing bonfire and staging two spectacular fireworks displays, including an earlier display designed especially for our youngest visitors. Wrap up warm and enjoy a range of entertainment suited to all ages. Tuck into a selection of delicious food, from tasty hog roasts to churros and sweet treats. Round it off with a seasonal glass of mulled wine or cider

On Saturday 29 October, as well as a traditional bonfire you can enjoy a ‘frightful’ night with spooky Halloween themed entertainment, firework displays and music – two wonderful autumn family events rolled in to one! Adults £17, Children £11. Book in advance.

Halloween Trail at Monkey Park, Chesterfield

Saturday 29th October 2022, 11am – 1.30pm

Fangtastic family activity at Monkey Park. Follow a spooktacular set of clues and activities to enjoy. Wrap up warm, be brave, and enjoy. £1.50 suggested donation and must be pre-booked in advance.

Halloween Trail at Renishaw Hall

Saturday 29th and Sunday 30th October 2022

Grab your broomsticks and expect spooky twists as you weave into the woodlands and gardens to seek out the all-important questions and solve the puzzle. A tasty treat awaits in the Visitor’s Centre for all that succeed. Family ticket £20. Booking essential.

Little Monster Factory at Peak Village, Rowsley

Saturday 29th and Sunday 30th October 2022, 11am to 3pm

Fun Halloween event for children. Halloween face painting, hair and nails – with before and after pictures! Free parking and dogs welcome.

If you fancy combining this activity with breakfast or lunch at the fabulous Chatsworth Kitchen I’d recommend booking there.

Breakfast with the Spooks, Clumber Park

Saturday 29th and Sunday 30th of October 2022

Breakfast with spooks, monsters and ghouls to get you in the spirit of Halloween with a children’s craft and colouring included. Fancy dress welcome. Adult breakfast £9.74, children’s breakfast £4.50. Children under 3 eat for free. Booking required, phone 01909 511034

Halloween Trail & Pumpkin Parlour, Elvaston Castle, near Derby

Sunday 30 October 2022, 10.30am-3.30pm.

Complete the spooky trail to earn your certificate, then head to the courtyards to visit our pumpkin parlour and carve your very own pumpkin to take home! Fancy dress encouraged. £2 per trail sheet, pumpkin and other activity prices vary, free admission to Elvaston, car park charges apply. No booking required and turn-up any time.

Halloween at Barrow Hill Roundhouse, near Chesterfield

Sunday 30th October 2022, 10am – 4pm (last entry 3pm)

Mummified train, spooky storytelling, fancy dress competition. Family ticket £22.

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