There was something strange in the neighbourhood this Halloween as ghosts and ghouls invaded a Witham precinct.

Witches, wizards, devils and demons descended on the Newlands Shopping Centre on Saturday as part of a spooktacular Halloween event.

Free hourly workshops saw children transform into little horrors after making their own monstrous masks.

They even created their own trick or treat bags before becoming a 'Newlands Ghostbuster' and hunting down ghouls hidden in shop windows throughout the centre.

Among them was three-year-old Joshua Lett who was busy getting involved with the activities.

His grandfather, Frank Jeffrey said: "Joshua had a great time sticking all sorts on to his scary skeleton mask and trick or treat bag, and he was excited to go on the ghost hunt and win a prize.

"He enjoyed searching for all the ghost stickers in the shop windows.

"It's good that the shopping centre put on the Halloween event because the children really enjoyed it.

"And obviously Joshua gets to take home something that he's made himself, which is fantastic."

Angela Mead had come to the shopping centre with her three-year-old granddaughter, Petula in search of some ghostly goings-on.

She said: "We only came out to see if we could find any Halloween events so we were delighted to find out about the free workshops.

"Petula had a lovely time, she loves arts and crafts so it certainly kept her busy and entertained."

Sharon Clarke's seven-year-old granddaughters, Rosie and Tia also joined in the freaky fun.

"The girls are really excited for Halloween so they had a great time taking part in the workshops," she said.

"It's great that the event was free as well."

The workshops, which ran from 11am until 3pm, were a hit among shoppers with hundreds getting involved.

Shopping centre manager, Lorne Campbell said: "We were delighted to be able to put on this free event to entertain all the little monsters and it was great to see some of their scary creations.

"We know that families really appreciate having fun free sessions where youngsters can make their own craft items to take home so it was no surprise that our Halloween workshops proved really popular.

"It's not always easy to find things to do as a family that are free and close to home so events like this are always good.

"It helps make a shopping trip more enjoyable for children as well and of course gives them something they can use this Halloween."

Centre Opening Hours

Mon - Fri

9am - 5pm
9am - 5pm
10am - 4pm


Please check individual store details for business hours

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