All The Scare of the Fair: A Screamland Review

Thrills, scare - and hugs- at Screamland Photo: Stephen Candy

Screamland at Dreamland: A Rev-?woooooooh

Dreamland’s scare fest returns this month with all the celebrated storytelling and stunning set design that it’s become famous for.

This month sees new maze Hammer House of Horror open in the Ballroom – expect a grand homage to ghoulish cinematic Big Hitters such as the Woman in Black. I did scream. I also nearly threw up after inhaling some of the smell sensors, so I’d advise not necking a few pints for Dutch courage before entering.

A thrilling edition for sure, but Screamland you had me at The Brotherhood: the maze where Ye Olde Ghosts spoke about ‘Michaelmas’ a saints day nobody knows anything about but it almost definitely caused the bubonic plague and it should absolutely be a bank holiday.

Photo: Stephen Candy

Anyway a demented medieval quack puts a hood over your head and instructs us eager plague-ridden punters to touch the shoulder in front of you; being British this can be a bit awks but by the time we were half way through we clung to each other like dear friends.  The foray back into disease-ridden England with its putrid corpses was a deft, ghoulish touch while the table adorned with a variety of punchy, bristled herbs kept the  influencers happy who I gladly informed were locally sourced which may or may not be true.

Outside Dreamland lights up providing a vivid, neon  backdrop for the dead, bedraggled zombies to course around. There was a mixed response from the revellers: some leapt out of their skin while others grew misty-eyed after  being reminded of the hacylon days of clubbers falling out of  Club Caprice at around 5am. Dickensian figures skulked terrifyingly in the shadows complete with jaunty hats and chimney sweep apparel,  but apparently they were just locals sauntering in from Margate.

Pic: Stephen Candy

My last maze to complete saw me scuttling through the chambers of The Sleep Experiment and I was thrilled to bits with the shrill, scary cockney voice the lead actor had perfected. For once it wasn’t a flashback of myself caterwauling over a moody Stella at the Britannia, but more akin to a souped up Danny Dyer with total EVIL on his brain, which everyone can be exceptionally grateful for.

Photo Stephen Candy

Charging through the maze amid strobe lighting I selflessly latched on to a group of YouTubers. I followed them around like a drunk, obnoxious aunt on a family conga where everyone wants to cast you into the buffet table and see you destroyed by plates of stale sausage rolls. A terrifying prospect. The actors were scary too.

All in all there were terrible smells, awesome sets and screams a-plenty. I did scream, ok?

Screamland features five mazes: Hammer House of Horror, The Brotherhood, The Sleep Experiment, Condemned Carnival and Submerged.

Screamland takes place between 6pm-11pm on:

Friday 18th October
Saturday 19th October
Friday 25th October
Saturday 26th October
Thursday 31st October
Friday 1st November

The scare mazes are 12A rated and anyone 16 and under must be accompanied by an adult aged 18 and over at all times. No entry after 9pm. Tickets available at