Well as one knows I like to wait till after the event before commenting about the Halloween festivities, after 176 children booked in for Halloween I am very proud to say that it was more like 200 children coming through our doors. This in itself is an accomplishment and clearly shows that the castle's Halloween daytime Children's Event is a fixed date in the calendar for many people.
Sadly I personally received three (3) complaints:
1st complaint: the children's ghost our was too scary!! May I point out that's its a "ghost tour" - that's what it's all about, so I'm not so bothered about that complaint.
Complaint 2: "the bouncy castle had too many children on it." After personally investigating myself, it would seem that that when I went to see "the problem", the children on the bouncy castle were ages between 7 and 10 years of age and there was a child who was roughly 4/5. The parent was concerned that her child may be in some way "hurt or not able to enjoy themselves". I spoke with the bouncy castle bloke who said that he could supply me with a "baby bouncy castle" along with a soft play area at a cost of an extra £75.00. This is something I agreed with. So next year we will have a "baby section" as well as a kiddies section thus eradicating this problem.
The third complaint which if I'm honest was more of an observation than a complaint was that a child's double buggy couldn't get round the castle due to the amount of people that were there. So in fairness I fully refunded the client and hence the reason a "toddlers" play area will be put in place for next year's event!!
Halloween Night "30th October" was also a totally successful event with 30 adults fully enjoying a "fun fright night" and a GREAT NIGHT WAS HAD BY ALL
I paid for a close-hand magician and tarot card readers, something that I did not need to do as there were no bookings from the general public. But I wanted to ensure our Halloween events are second to none. The "wedding client" whose private party was on the tour was more than impressed with it.
"Halloween night on "31st October" had 21 people booked on this event. The evening didn't start off so well as a group of 2 and a group of 3 had thought it was going to be a "Halloween fright night ghost tour" - all music and laughter and general frolics - whilst the other 16 in tyhe group knew why they were there. It was advertised on the Most Haunted website as an extended "share the experience" ghost tour with the added privilege of sleeping in the haunted upper floors.
Well from the onset one lady in the group of five was wanting drink after drink, which for an hour and a half we supplied. I later escorted them down to the conservatory to have their meal as serving 21 people a two course meal in the haunted bar is impossible due to its small size (max dining capacity around 15).
Anyway, the small group of five complained that the Conservatory wasn't very Halloween looking. I explained that this was not a Halloween party but an especially extended 'share the experience ghost tour' (and advertised as such on the website). Then the one lady that was continuously drinking said that she was not offered drinks. Well I know this to be untrue as Victoria had been running back and forth serving drinks. So at 9pm I stopped Victoria serving anyone more drinks, as the tour was going to start at 10.00 pm and I needed people to be sober, or at least to sober up enough for the tour.
However when the tour began, the 5 people in this one group kept laughing and joking and disturbing everyone else in the group. At 1 am, when I took them back to the haunted floors, the couple of 2 and the other 3 that formed the distruptive group of five (who really wanted a 'party'), got their stuff and left. At this point, being delighted they had left, everyone spontaneously started to clap!
We continued to investigate till 04.30 hrs when I finally stopped the tour. So the 16 people that remained had a great time and we all even sat together at breakfast and talked about the castle. So a great ending to a brillent couple of days but in future I will need to keep a reserve ghost hunter leader on hand to separate any unruly members of a large group into a separate group on their own so they do not spoil the tour for everyone else.
Thankyou to all the castle staff, the chefs, waitresses, front of house, reception, Melissa and of course dirty Donna as well as Michael for the music you are all a credit to the castle.
We subsequently got a bad review on Trip Advisor for the ghost tour from the five persons concerned, which follows below, but we also got a good review from one of the 16 (who formed the bulk of the tour) saying how good it all was for them (aside from the behaviour of the group of five).
First the bad review:
I am sorry to write this review. I have never written a review before but feel compelled to inform any interested persons who want to attend the ghost tour at Craig y nos. Only one word would sum up my experience, terrible!
I will explain why, the organisation of the tour was awful we had no instructions on when to arrive or what to bring, then when it came to the day the arrival times changed from 8pm to 6pm then back to 8pm. This was a pain as we live an hour and a half away we had to make rushed travel arrangements which were not actually necessary.
On arrive we waited in the haunted bar which actually was fun decorated great but as soon as we went down for dinner the fun stopped.
Dinner was in a large well lit dinning room used for weddings and set up as a wedding, with rat pack music, instead of getting in the haloween spirit we were falling asleep. The room had over 15 black bags sitting on the floor. Then the waitress took drink orders from all the dinning tables except ours, when we pointed this out we were told tough we could not order drinks. This was at 8pm then we had to wait until 10pm for the tour to start. No entrainment, no drinks, no atmosphere and then to make it worse the guide Steve started talking.
The only way to describe the tour guide Steve is, rude, sexist, insulting, a complete lack of knowledge on the history of the building, castle. He publicly reprimanded and embarrassed his staff, it was horrendous to have to sit there and listen to this man.
When the tour started we had no were organised to sleep and were told just find a mattress and sleep on it.
The actual ghost tour, was non interesting, non engaging and a complete fast. It was that bad that we felt compelled to leave the tour and have to make the hour and a half drive back home in the middle of the night.
Completely disappointed and I hope that the managers at Craig y nos castle hotel, review the service they are providing through their ghost tours so that other visitors do not have to experience what we went through. For such a lovely building and location it is sad that we had to be put through that. Terrible!
And now the view of the event from the perspective of one who was part of the majority there on the night - one of the remaining 16, who KNEW they were on an extended ghost tour and not a fright night:
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 days ago NEW
I'd like to share MY experience of the "Halloween extended share the experience ghost tour" as I found it upsetting to see the rather mean and unfair review of the night.
I attended the evening with My Husband and 5 other family members.
I feel compelled to make some points with regards to the negative feedback from my own opinion.... (I appreciate we're all entitled to our opinions)
We ate in the very luxurious conservatory, 2 courses with the most gorgeous toffee apple cheesecake! The waiting staff we're lovely and brought our drinks to our table, we did hear the complaints about not ordering drinks from another table, but to my recollection it was as the dinner had ended. The reason we were hanging around until 10pm (as advertised) was the briefing (health and safety, fire drill, and general advice as we were going to be spending the evening on derelict floors with little lighting)
With regards to Steve (the tour guide)....... What can you say?. Steve is a larger than life Man with a cheeky chappy personality with a gift of the gab. Ok so sometimes he made our eyes roll but his aim was never to offend but to put you at ease in what can be a very intense and for some a frightening experience. He certainly makes you laugh! And if he hasn't remembered your name by the end of the tour.... He'll either make one up or give you a nickname! As for reprimanding his staff.... One was his wife/partner and she gave as good as she got! They made a great team.
Accommodation........the website/advertising clearly stated, we were to sleep on mattresses in a derelict childrens ward. We were given crisp white clean sheets to put with our sleeping bags, some of us even got single/double beds.
As for the tour, the first 2 hours were completely spoilt by a few females who were obviously unhappy, outspoken and on occasion quite rude to the staff. Once they had left we continued to have a fantastic night! We all got on really well as a group (there were about 16 of us) and had great results on the ouija board. It was a fantastic opportunity to see the normally out of bounds areas of this magnificent castle! We carried on investigating until 4:30am then once we'd been put to bed we stayed awake talking about the night.
At 7:30am the foghorn that is Steve the guide... Woke us up to "morning campers Hi-de-hi" where we all enjoyed a fantastic all you can eat breakfast, we all sat at one large banquet table discussing the nights events.
A fantastic night!!!! (I hate to say it but a bargain @£49 including a 2 course eve meal and breakfast) we as a family will be booking to go again next halloween!!
Stayed October 2014, travelled with family
So this all goes to show how different people want different things. We do offer Fright Nights and we offer serious ghost tours. The Fright Night event for this Halloween was on the 30th but this is the first time in a few years we have run a serious, specially extended ghost tour on the Halloween night itself. It was a long night, finishing at 04.30 am, and meant for serious (and relatively sober!) ghost hunters.
Please check on the site which type of tour you're on to be sure it is the right one for you and your group.