A frightening array of half term activities

The deer in the grounds of Wentworth Castle
The deer in the grounds of Wentworth Castle

The winter nights might be setting in, but there has never been a better time to get involved in some fantastic family fun and activities – from climbing and crafts to pumpkin carving and pantomime – across Sheffield and South Yorkshire.

With Halloween fast approaching, why not take the family to discover South Yorkshire’s spookiest castle at Wentworth Castle.

Amazing history and beautiful scenery combine at the castle – just a few minutes from junction 37 off the M1 – and events being staged over half term include pumpkin carving, broomstick making, creepy creatures and ghost walks around Wentworth Gardens, taking in Stainborough Castle.

It is also a great time of year for a welly wander in the deer park, with lots of leaves to kick through and puddles to jump in and the resident stag’s magnificent antlers are fully grown at this time of year.

The gardens, café, gift shop and adventure playground are open every day from 10am to 5pm until the end of October, with winter hours from November 3.

For creative kids, the Sheffield College’s Lego Education Innovation Studio is running a Lego camp during half term.

Fun activities include building and programming models such as a hungry alligator and a drumming monkey, moving on to more advanced programming using Lego Mindstorms.

To book your child a place on the popular camp, go to www.sheffcol.ac.uk/lego

Crafty youngsters might prefer a workshop at the illustrious craft venue The Painted Teapot.

Easily the most fun you can have with a paintbrush during the school holidays, The Painted Teapot offers pottery painting and hours of creative fun at a reasonable price.

You can even get your child’s handprints immortalised in a bauble to hang on the Christmas tree.

There will be offers running every day over the holidays which you can find on The Painted Teapot Facebook page.

Or for those who like to get outdoors and active, Awesome Walls Climbing Centre Sheffield is offering all sorts of fun-packed activities over the October half-term.

From taster sessions to full on climbing clubs, there is sure to be something for everyone at the largest climbing centre in England, which is also the first to be recognised as a National Performance Centre.

For more information go to www.awesomewalls.co.uk or call 0114 2446622. Aspiring archaeologists and caving fans alike are sure to really dig a day out at Treak Cliff Cavern.

The Peak District cavern is home to a world of stalactites and stalagmites and from October 18 to November 2 will offer the chance for visitors to polish their own piece of mined Blue John stone - still dug out of the cavern to this day.

For more information go to www.bluejohnstone.com or call 01433 62057.

Spooky songs will be served up at Abbeydale Industrial Hamlet as the sights, sounds and stories of the historical hamlet are brought back to life on October 29 from 10am to 12.30pm.

Stories of the First World War will be told at Kelham Island Museum on October 28 from 10.30am and 1pm, featuring fun activities around children’s literature, sure to entertain as well as educate.

Of course, no holiday fun would be complete without a trip to the panto.

And the MOS production of Peter Pan is sure to have a new legion of fans hooked this Christmas – oh yes it will!

A total of 24 youngsters from across South Yorkshire will put on the pantomime in their stage debuts at City Hall from December 27 to January 4, mixing slapstick, comedy and spectacle.

For tickets, call 01709 365108 or go to Manor Operatic