Another great weekend at the Llandovery Sheep Festival providing spooky guided tours of the town. Dastardly Discoveries – a Horrible History of Llandovery involves five murders, a nasty execution, a drunken priest and a handful of ghosts – not to mention the usual quota of magic tricks along the way. During one of the tours I was interupted by a gentlemen who told me very graphically his own exprience of twice meeting with the ghost of a drover, cattle herders who used the town as a base in the olden days.
Don’t tell the staff at Hogwarts, but next month I’ll be in the classroom at Trinity St David’s University teaching magic. I have been signed up to join the lecturers on the three year course for trainee primary teachers to help them bring a little magic into the classroom. It’s all part of “Circles and Spheres Day” (my bit is inspired by the Magic Circle) designed to get the students thinking creatively around a number of teaching topics. I’ll be introducing them to some simple magic they can use with their pupils – and hopefully helping them to conjure up some inspirational teaching for the future.
Just a few days to go now until the Strange Wales weekend kicks off in Laugharne. This is the second weekend to be held in the town to celebrate the centenary of its most famous son, Dylan Thomas, and features appearances by artists including Molly Parkin, Trwbador, Cate Le Bon. Richard James and Gruff Rhys – and me! Catch me on Friday night at 7pm in the Congregational Church with Strange Tales from the Darker Side for just £5 – those with Weekender Tickets get in for free! More details (though you have to search around a bit to find them) on their website www.strangewales.com.
Prop building time, in preparation for a very busy Autumn of magical storytelling. This is an old prop brought up to date by making it look even older than it did. Originally built almost twenty years ago I have given in a revamp so that it can feature in a new set of Strange Tales from the Darker Side. It will probably make its debut at the Judge’s Lodging in Presteigne in November. Now I just need to write a story to go with it.
Meet my new agents – Contraband! Run by Archie Archer (who you may have seen as one of the regular panellists on TV’s The Apprentice You’re Fired) I am on the books along with the likes of Fiona Bruce, Derren Brown and Alexandra Burke. So, fingers firmly crossed in the hopes of getting the occasional booking from them. Check out their website HERE.
Check out my mate Karl’s new website to publicise our plans for Halloween. There’s an adult and a junior section to be found at www.cursedtales.com with the background stories to our shows at Picton Castle and Castell Coch together with show times and ticket prices.
Castell Coch could have been purpose built for Halloween. Dark dungeons, creepy corridors and a nightmare nursery – not to mention a resident ghost or two – make a wonderful backdrop for three days and nights of scariness this autumn. Join me for family tours in the afternoons of October 31st and November 1st & 2nd – and much weirder stuff for the grown-ups each evening. The setting for films and TV programmes ranging from Dr Who and The Worst Witch to the Prisoner of Zenda and Merlin pre-booking is a must. For more details visit the castle’s website by clicking HERE.
. . . and we are getting ready to open up the portal between this world and the next. At Picton Castle we are going time travelling. But our time machine has a mind of its own and only takes us back the most horrible bits of our history. Come and meet Evil Egyptians, Jack the Ripper and some awesome aliens – not to mention the Plague and the fiends of the French Revolution. We have grown-up tours through the evening and much less scary fun tours for families during daylight hours from October 29th to 31st. More details on the Picton Castle website soon.
It all looks very peaceful on a beautiful autumn day like today. But at night; at night it’s a very different story. I have just finished making the arrangements for Newton House’s “History & Hauntings Night” on Friday 24th October, an annual event that is not to be missed if you like spooky places. Newton House, part of the Dinefwr Park property, is one of the National Trust’s top ten most haunted buildings. We will be running three tours of the house during the night. Come and see why it scared the living daylights out of the Most Haunted team – full details soon at the Dinefwr Park website. Click HERE for the link.