Boris Ireland and Debra Rothwell have delighted Levin children with their annual Halloween Garden for the past seven years.

Hundreds of children roam the couple's front garden, which is full of crosses, coffins, ghosts and splatters of blood on everything, including the grass. At times there are some scary sounds as well as smoke. At the end of this gauntlet there is a bucket of sweets from which Debra shares generously.

It all began seven years ago with a visiting student from Switzerland.

"Her birthday was on October 28, so we threw a Halloween-themed party for her," said Debra.

Debra Rothwell hands out the sweets in her Halloween Garden in Levin.
Debra Rothwell hands out the sweets in her Halloween Garden in Levin.

Other visiting students asked about the Halloween party saying they'd heard it was wonderful.

The fame has spread around town and now dinner time on October 31 is a busy affair at Kawiu Rd with dressed-up children, parents in tow, making their way to No 3 to enjoy the sights, sounds and treats.

This year, within the first half hour of operation the Halloween Garden had had 290 trick or treaters and as rain set in they just kept coming.

The Halloween Garden is made from materials the couple gathered for free over the years, such as old hospital sheets, actuators from old hospital beds, coffins and crosses made from timber.

"The only thing we bought was the smoke machine, I think," said Boris.

Boris Ireland surveys his Halloween Garden.
Boris Ireland surveys his Halloween Garden.

He said he thought celebrating Halloween was much better than Guy Fawke's.

Having spent time in the fire brigade he said every year patrols have to come out to places where Guy Fawke's fireworks have gone wrong and deal with the fallout. Halloween was much safer.