BLACKPOOL is well-known for its sun, sea, sand... and scary witches.

The last ones come courtesy of the Blackpool Dungeon which portrays true stories from Lancashire’s past in bloodcurdling detail.

Costumed actors guide us on a gruesome, grisly, gory tour through the most horrible histories of the Red Rose county.

The Dungeon is one of several attractions in Blackpool Tower, along with the ballroom, the circus, the children’s play palace, and of course the tower itself.

The Dungeon lies in the depths of the tower’s lower floors, in a warren of passages and low-light rooms kitted out like some medieval house of horrors.

Guiding us through the gloom is a jocular jester, a tongue-pulling torturer, a hanging judge, a ruthless investigator, and one of the Pendle witches.

And most entertainingly, when we find ourselves trapped inside a Saxon fortress, a peasant girl who needs our help fight off Viking hordes.

As the wall shakes and arrows land, she converses with the decapitated head – realistically animated through audiovisual trickery – of a captured Viking.

Of course we escape the attack, but there are plenty of other ‘dangers’ lurking in this labyrinth to make us jump, scream, shiver, or make us wish we were somewhere else.

Thankfully, visitors get a choice whether or not to take the white-knuckle ride at the end of the tour, to get a taste of what the witches felt in the final moments of their lives.

If you’ve visited York Dungeon then you know the sort of thing to expect at Blackpool Dungeon, but there’s plenty here that’s different to the Yorkshire version.

The Blackpool Dungeon is very well done, far better than those naff old haunted houses at the funfair, and it’s good fun for older children, teenagers and adults, with oodles of humour amongst the horror.

But it really isn’t for the faint-hearted: there are some proper scares and disturbing moments down in the dungeon.

While I spent an hour with the nasty people, my wife and daughter spent a relaxing time sitting the famous Tower Ballroom, having a cuppa while listening to live organ music and watching the skilful amateur dancers having their Strictly moments on the floor.

Elsewhere in the Tower is Jungle Jim’s, the massive indoor play area for little children, and the famous Circus, which this year celebrates 50 years of Circus with resident clowns Mooky and Mr Boo.

Visitors can also take a lift to the top of the tower, first watching a ‘4D’ film about the structure’s history.

At the top, as well as the 360-degree view of surrounding town, sea and countryside, the Eye offers a chance to walk across five-centimetre-thick glass and take a dizzying look down 380 feet to the promenade beneath.

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