Spilman's Farm Pumpkin Picking 2022 - Top Tips

 I work with Spilman's to advertise their seasonal events but bought our own tickets to this particular event and this post is not part of any collaboration. 

We have been visiting Spilman's Farm Pumpkin Patch for a few years now. I will admit, before our first visit I was worried it would be one huge cliché. I am not one for posing for photos for Instagram and in my head, I imagined that's what it would be like. 

BUT I was pleasantly surprised. We actually had a brilliant time and it's been one of our favourite days out ever since. I usually book tickets as soon as they're released and it's an activity that's suitable for all ages - including teenagers.

We often talk about how we will be visiting Spilman's every October for the rest of our lives, even when the kids have left home. We genuinely love it that much. 

It has always been a good day out but I really think 2022 has been the best year yet. I generally book on opening weekend as Halloween in our house lasts for the whole of October.

We eat some of the pumpkins and the rest keep if they are cool and dry (we aren't putting our heating on until November this year so they should be ok in our living room). We will carve them at home closer to Halloween. 

Booking Information 

Booking in advance is essential. You pick a date and an arrival time (30 minute windows) when you book and can then stay at the festival all day until it closes. 

Spilman's Farm is near Thirsk. It's a very easy drive, straight down the A19 and around 90 minutes from Newcastle. 

It is £7.50 per person which includes a £5 voucher per person (which you are given on arrival) to spend on selected activities / pumpkins. 

Under 2s go free and dogs are not permitted. 

Book online here: spilmans.co.uk/pyo-pumpkins

There is ample on-site parking - if you're going to be picking a lot of pumpkins, try and park in the first space you see so you won't have as far to push your wheelbarrow. 

Once you are parked up, you can collect a wheelbarrow from the friendly staff at the farm entrance. These are free to hire and there are mini ones for kids too which are cute. 

Once you have collected your wheelbarrow, you walk through the check in kiosk where they scan your tickets and give you a wristband, info sheet and your £5 vouchers. 

The wristband allows you to come and go across the site all day long so you enjoy some of the activities, have some lunch in the farm shop and then go back to pick your pumpkins. 

The £5 vouchers are pooled between your group - there isn't one per person. This means you could let the kids use some of your 'allowance'. Everytime you join in with an activity your card is stamped and then they are all counted up at the end when you leave. 

Spilman's Farm Pumpkin Picking 2022 - Top Tips  - vouchers

Each activity has a multi buy offer: 

  • 1 person = £2 (or two stamps)
  • 2 people = £3 (or three stamps)
  • 3 people = £4 (or four stamps)
  • 4 people = £5 (or five stamps) 
  • 5+ people = £1 extra (or one stamp) per person 
To me, this encourages us adults to join in too. If our three kids take part in activity, they would use four stamps where as if myself and Steve joined in also, it would only be two additional stamps. 

It feels a lot more complicated than it is - the staff will keep you right. 

You can buy more £5 vouchers from the check in kiosk if needed. 

The site is very well signposted and it would be difficult to get lost. Most of the activities (everything except the tractor ride) are in the first field. 

They have paths marked out between activities with a kind of softened woodchip down. I did spot people with wheelchairs and pushchairs but I do think it may be a struggle if it's been raining.

A new addition this year is 'The Last Pumpkin' Show which is a pumpkin themed show at various intervals throughout the day. It's in a big covered marquee and you can see the timings on a board near the entrance. You don't need to book or use a voucher for this show, it's all included. 

We didn't personally watch it as it looked like it was probably best suited to Primary School aged children / pre-schoolers and my kids felt a bit old for this kind of thing now. It's a nice little addition for little ones though. 

We usually have the same routine - we have a walk around the activities, pick a few to try, go and pick our pumpkins, pop them in the car then visit the farm shop for pizzas and lunch. This year was no different. 

There are lots of photo opportunites as you walk around too from beautiful pumpkin displays to those boards you can stick your heads thorugh. 


  • The Last Pumpkin Show (included with admission) 
  • Hay Bale Mountain (included with admission) 
  • Visit the Farm Pigs (included with admission) 
  • Carving Barn (use your voucher) 
  • Corn Cannon (use your voucher) 
  • Castle Slingshot (use your voucher) 
  • Tractor Rides (use your voucher) 
  • Spooky Walk (use your voucher) 
  • Funfair Rides (cash/card - typically £2 - £4 per ride) 
  • Food Vendors (cash/card) 
  • Pumpkin Picking (pay per pumpkin on leaving - voucher / cash / card) 
  • Farm Shop (cash / card) 

You can puchase more vouchers / use cash if required. You can complete as many / few activities at you like. On the day of our visit, there were no queues for anything and there is plenty of space. It will probably get busier the closer we get to Halloween though. 

As we always visit earlier in the season, we've not tried the carving barn. It looks fab though - everything is provided and no mess at home! I would definitely do this if we visited closer the Halloween. 

The Hay Bale is always the first thing Jack wants to do. It offers a brill oversight of the whole farm and pumkin patches. 

The corn blaster below is my favourite activity. Corn is wedged into a cannon and you have to try and hit the targets. It comes out with some force and does make a bit of a noise so prepare kids / sensitive people for this. One 'turn' gives you three shots. 

The slingshot is also brill - you get to fire potatoes at a castle. You do need a little strength for this one and it's easier for older children. Little ones may struggle. One 'turn' gives you three attempts. 

The spooky walk hasn't been here for a few years. We didn't try this but it's basically an indoor horror house. 

Below is the marquee where 'The Last Pumpkin' show is performed. 

The tractor ride is always fun for little ones and goes around the perimeter of the farm. 

And stopping to say hello to the piglets and pigs is always a highlight for us. They're so cute. 

I prefer doing the activities first as it is just less faff - no needing to go back to the car with your pumpkins or wheeling your full wheelbarrow around activities. Plus it is easier when it comes to paying at the end as whatever stamps you haven't used up on activities are automatically taken off the cost of your pumpkins. 

Onto the pumpkin fields and this year there seem to have been more than ever before. One side has a couple of fields filled with traditional orange pumpkins and then another side is dedicated to ghost and unusual pumpkins. It is SO easy to get carried away so set a limit on how many pumpkins each person can pick before you go. 

We usually say one big, one little for each person (so 10 pumpkins in total which is more than enough for us). 

People tend to leave their wheelbarrow / pushchairs (if you have one) at the edge of the field and walk into the patch. If you do this, remember you will have to carry your pumpkin back to your wheelbarrow. 

Selecting your favourite pumpkins is so much fun and there are 125,000 to choose from at Spilman's this year. At the moment, there is no limit on how many you can pick. 

Spilman's Farm Pumpkin Picking 2022 - Top Tips  - pumpkin patch

Once you're happy with your selection, you pay for them on exit. Prices really aren't bad at all. We picked 10 pumpkins in total (with three pretty big ones) and used 6/25 of our stamps on activities. We had £11 to pay on exit. I thought this was super cheap! You can pay by cash or card. 

Spilman's Farm Pumpkin Picking 2022 - Top Tips  - wheelbarrow

Once you have paid there is a pumpkin washing station and this year, there are bags for you to help yourself to to carry your pumpkins home which are a welcome new addition. I love that they are branded too - cute touch. 

At this point, we usually wheel our pumpkins back to the car then return our wheelbarrow and have some lunch. 

You can buy ice cream and a selction of cakes and hot drinks from the farm shop and there is plenty of covered indoor and outdoor seating. 

I personally recommend heading to the barn and ordering wood fired pizzas. They are SO good and a bargain at £6. They're ready really quickly - the team here are just super efficient and the pizza sauce is heavy on the garlic which I love. 

You can pay by cash or card and there are a few other options too. 

Spilman's Farm Pumpkin Picking 2022 - Top Tips  - pizza

Seating is in the barn which is decorated for Halloween. Highchairs are available and there are toilets / hand washing facilities. 

I also highly recommend popping into the farm shop at the entrance. The pumpkin displays are lovely here and they have a small range of local produce for sale. I could have spent a fortune! 

We left with some Yorkshire Wine which we have put away for Christmas and some Halloween Biscuits for later that day. 

Top Tips for Visiting Spilman's Pumpkin Festival 

  • Make sure you book in advance online 

  • Wear wellies - it does get muddy and there are puddles. We usually keep our trainers in the car and change before travelling home. We bring a bin bag to put our wellies in the boot as they are usually pretty muddy 

  • Leave your dog at home for this pumpkin patch 

  • We didn't need any cash - we used the voucher system and paid for everything else with contactless

  • You won't want to miss the pizzas for lunch 

  • To get the most value out of the activities, try and get everyone in your group to join in rather than one person doing one activity then another person doing something else - make use of the multi-buy deal 

  • Set a limit on how many pumpkins kids can pick before you enter the pumpkin fields (you might want to do the same with activities and fairground rides too)
  • Lots of little ones wear puddle suits and I'd probably recommend this 

  • Bring gloves or be mindful of the pumpkin stalks with kids - they can be prickly 

  • There is sadly no baby change on site - try and be as prepared for this as you can. Not ideal but using a travel changing mat in the car boot usually worked for us 

  • It's mostly outdoors so do wrap up / bring your waterproofs. There are plenty of places you can take shelter undercover if needed 

  • Some people do take wheelchairs and pushchairs and do seem to manage ok, it may be a struggle if there's a lot of rain though and I'd recommend bringing an all-terrain pushchair / wheelchair if you can and be prepared for it to get muddy 

  • There are plenty of handwashing facilities but we always like to pack wipes in the car too. Sometimes the final changing of our wellies into trainers before the journey home can get messy and the wipes are ideal for cleaning this up just before we go home 

  • You can definitely spend as long or little as you'd like here. I would recommend setting aside 3 hours for a visit but you could definitely just pop to the pumpkin patch and spend less time or take part in every activity and spend a full day there 

  • Take a small bag / bumbag / wear something with a zipped pocket to keep your vouchers safe and have one person in charge of them - if they're lost, you won't get them back 

  • If you happen to spend less than £5 on activities and pumpkins, you won't get a refund so do make sure you spend your full allocation and get your money's worth 

  • We like to get in the mood and listen to our Halloween Playlist in the car on the journey there 

  • The loos are at the entrance just after the kiosk (and next to the pizza barn). It is a little trek from the pumpkin fields so make sure the kids go before you head to the pumpkin patches 

  • Bring your camera / phone - lots of fab photo opportunities 

  • Remember pumpkins can cause some animals to be sick and to display responsibly 


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