Spectacular Family Fun & Special Events at the Royal Gunpowder Mills


For superb days out in Essex, our heady host of spectacular events offers an exciting array of family fun and entertainment at the Royal Gunpowder Mills.

Opening Days and Times:

  • We are open daily during School Holidays
  • Open Sundays 25 March - 29 August 2016
  • 10 am - 5 pm (last entry 3 pm)

Suggested length of visit is four to five hours

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2016 Events

Spooky Secret Island

Spooky Secret Island

Spooky Secret Island: Half Term 22 - 30 October   Things are starting to get rather spooky at the Royal Gunpowder Mills as we get ready for the arrival of Dr Gore and SPOOKY SECRET ISLAND!   Dr Gore is looking for some willing volunteers this October …Read More
Guy Fawkes Fireworks

Guy Fawkes Fireworks

Guy Fawkes Festival and Fireworks: 5 - 6 November Celebrate Bonfire Night with the fireworks display at the Royal Gunpowder Mills, Waltham Abbey, when the historic site comes alive with The Guy Fawkes Experience from 2pm onwards including Family Fun act…Read More

2017 Events


February Half Term: 11 – 19 February

Half-Term Kids find Professor Nitrate creating mayhem with new experiments in the Mad Lab.  Indoors and outdoor fun for children of all ages.   More information coming soon.



Easter: 1 – 17 April

A wonderful event with activities and hunts for the little ones and experiments and trails for the  older ones.  And spring is showing its fresh colours around the beautiful venue and woodland.



Classic Cars Show: 23 April 

Proud to be the end point for the annual Chelmer Valley Car Meet , regaling our Queens Mead with a wonderful display of 50’s and 60’s cars.



VE Day: 29 April – 1 May

OK – It’s back!  Our ever-popular VE Day celebrations featuring re-enactments, 40’s entertainments and dancing, and good food.  Be prepared to spruce up that 40’s frock and hairdo! 


Wild West Show: 27,28,29 May

The fantastic wild west re-enactors move in with their tent town!  Find out how they worked, lived and played out on the frontiers, and watch out for those bandits!  There is a shoot-out.


May Half Term: 30 May – 4 June

More events to come...

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Children's University


Royal Gunpowder Mills is a Learning Destination for the Children’s University and their Passport To Learning programme. Children can collect passport stamps for each of the following:

  • A General visit to Royal Gunpowder Mills
  • Science Show – Kaboom
  • Science Show – Space Race
  • Explosive Easter – 3rd & 4th April
  • Explosive Easter – 5th & 6th April
  • Spooky Secret Island (October half term)
  • Guy Fawkes Weekend


NoteThere may be loud bangs at some of our events.

Note: Children must be accompanied by an Adult or Guardian at all times.

Dogs: Only guide and assistance dogs will be allowed on the site. They must remain in harness during the visit.