Welcome, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, to my second favorite month of the year! I just love the countdown to Halloween! And boy do I have some exciting things planned to celebrate!
The first Spooktacular Halloween blog feature I’m bringing to you will (hopefully) be a weekly feature for this month: Creepy Running Routes!
There are a lot of creepy places in London… There’s a lot of history, after all! Old haunted streets, ancient graveyards, sites of torture and execution… London is downright grim! So each week I’ll find you a spooky destination to Run-o-Ween!
Crystal Palace Park: The best-worst place to play Zombies, Run!
My local park, Crystal Palace Park, was the inspiration for this blog series. Whilst a very beautiful park at most normal business hours, I realised very quickly how creepy it was first thing in the morning when, except for the odd shambling geriatric, you are the only person in it.
Add a soundtrack of shambling corpses and someone shouting at you to run over a radio headpiece, and suddenly you’ve found yourself in a real life zombie movie set. That pottering pensioner has suddenly transformed into the living dead, and every dead end, every tree root reaching out to trip you, every locked gate, every slippery, dewy hill, every loud, crunchy fallen leaf, is to his advantage.
Crystal Palace Park was home to the famous Crystal Palace built for the Great Exhibition of 1851. The symbol of Victorian industrial accomplishment burned to the ground in 1936, but it’s foundations, and dozens of Victorian statues remain. Victorian mock-Roman senators and mock-Egyptian sphinxes crumble in corners, while Victorian approximations of what the dinosaurs looked like, are in startlingly good condition.
Today CPP is also home to the Crystal Palace National Sports Centre, a recreational centre and athletics stadium that has been in operation since the 1960s.
It is this combination of thriving natural beauty, crumbling relics of civilisation, and clinical 1960s style architecture that make the perfect spot for a make believe zombie flick starring you.
In the context of running from zombies, I found this image very, very poignant. In the context of the real world, it was very nice of whoever found that shoe to put it up on a marker where it could be found.
Keep moving. Happy haunting. 🙂