Rochdale Feel Good Festival 2019: Family Zone in Festival Square

Date published: 11 August 2019

The Esplanade in front of Rochdale Town Hall was transformed into a Festival Square for families on Saturday 10 August, as part of 2019's Rochdale Feel Good Festival.


Rochdale Feel Good Festival 2019 - Festival Square

Rochdale Feel Good Festival 2019 - Festival Square


Activities and shows available for families on the day included a Virtual Reality Playground where children could wear a virtual reality headset, jump on a playground swing and be transported inside an experimental virtual reality ride mechanism. The virtual realities were chosen from the growing collection created by the world's only Thrill Engineer, Professor Brendan Walker and his team of Thrill Laboratory technicians.


Rochdale Feel Good Festival 2019 - Festival Square


Mayor of Rochdale, councillor Billy Sheerin, experienced wearing a virtual reality headset on the playground swing, as well as meeting Big Ted and Springy from Springhill Hopsice, who was collecting donations for the local cause inside Empire Rochdale.


Rochdale Feel Good Festival 2019 - Festival Square

Rochdale Feel Good Festival 2019 - Festival Square


Open from 11am to 5pm, other activities in the family zone included The Bewonderment Machine - a cycle-powered carousel for small children; an aerial ‘Dip’ trampoline show, featuring breath-taking air twisting tricks, music and comedy; Bees! The Colony, a fascinating multi-sensory experience where you could wander amongst a honey-perfumed bee colony, and the Playground of Illusions where visitors could play with intriguing interactive giant toys.

Dinotopia the dinosaur character could be found at the entrance to Rochdale Town Hall and was a big hit in preparation for Dippy the Dinosaur, the National History Museum's Diplodocus, coming to Rochdale in February 2020.

This was an amazing opportunity to get up close and personal with a 'real live' dinosaur for the first time since the Cretaceous era, and to find out a few things about how they lived and why they disappeared. You could make friends with her and pose for a selfie.


Rochdale Feel Good Festival 2019 - Festival Square
Mayor Billy Sheerin with Dinotopia


An inflatable assault course, balance bikes and tennis were on hand, hosted by Link4Life.

Lots of feel good creative activities were enjoyed by youngsters all day, including dhol drumming workshops, yoga, mindfulness, meditation classes, henna and a performance by the Women in Touch Community Dance Group and local group Skylight Circus Arts.


Rochdale Feel Good Festival 2019 - Festival Square

Rochdale Feel Good Festival 2019 - Festival Square

Feel Good Festival 2019


The Family Zone this year was sponsored by Hopwood Hall College and supported by Arts Council England National Lottery funding.

Photos by SKW Events, Joe Jones and Mark Pollitt.

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