Hocus Pocus Hall at Chessington World of Adventures
Hocus Pocus Hall is a unique little attraction at Chessington World of Adventures.
Opening in 2003 in a building which has stood in the park since the 18th century after a previous, smaller building was burnt to the ground during the English Civil War. The beautiful building stands at one of the parks entrances, framed between trees, the zoo sprawling either side of it, the main theme park behind.
Approaching Hocus Pocus Hall, small golbins sit on sign posts pointing the way. Join the usually short queue, waiting at the closed front door for a member of staff to appear.
After a short wait you are led into a room, wooden cladding on the walls, and cartoon style paintings on the wall. After everybody is inside, the ride host closes the door and presses the big green ‘Go’ button. The lights go down and two paintings in front come to life telling you to don your 3D glasses or ‘magic’ glasses, to enjoy the rest of the attraction. After a goblin starts to make mischief, luminous cartoon figures, monsters and goblins appear on the walls and roof, amazing children in the room, some parents too!
At this point, if you were wondering why everybody was crowding around one corner, everything becomes clear as a wall slides out of the way to reveal a narrow corridor, going around a left hand bend before turning all the way around, to walk through a rotating tunnel, all around are paintings which, with your 3D glasses, appear to pop out of the walls – they are very clever things.
Moving out of the rotating tunnel you enter a new area, a goblin sits in the corner, noises all around put younger visitors on edge. The room opens out, the floor painted with disorientating dots and circles which, with your 3D glasses seem to be on different levels.
Moving onwards you enter another narrow corridor which opens up to a room with multiple effects including some more goblins and a ‘bottomless’ well. A second large room lays next with similar effects before you move off down a corridor and enter a simple mirror maze before you emerge back into the daylight.
Hocus Pocus Hall is a great attraction making really good use of a protected building. All of the available space is used and the transitions between scenes are done well, not loosing the storyline.
It is an attraction which is meant to fill the ‘haunted’ lineup. To make it more child friendly they have replaced ghosts with magic and toned down the scares, it works in Chessington, in a family based theme park, this attraction has a long future in one form or another.