Scary mary! Gran spends hundreds kitting out home into spooky shrine so impressive it blocks road
By Harriet Whitehead and James Speakman
A Halloween-mad gran dubbed Scary Mary has spent hundreds kitting out her home as a spooky shrine complete with ghosts and ghouls, gravestones, witches and zombies.
Mary Flynn, 51, has been decorating the front garden of her semi-detached home in Liverpool, Merseyside, for the past six years – attracting thousands of visitors to the quiet suburban estate.
A giant spider can be seen crawling over her front window, a black gazebo houses a group of witches while ghoulish heads sit on top of the garage in a display which takes her three days to put together.
The gran-of-five said so many fans turn up to snap the spooky sight they frequently block the road in the run up to October 31.
And Mary, who got married on Halloween, now receives ghostly gifts from family members to mark her wedding anniversary to husband Dave, 54, who she has been married to for 32 years this October 31.
Mum-of-three Mary said: “I’ve been doing this for about six years now and it’s become a real attraction.
“It started with a ghost I put up in the window for my three daughters then we got a couple of gravestones and it’s grown from there.
“Now I’d say I’ve got well over a hundred items.
“On Halloween it’s bedlam. We probably get thousands of people turning up and the road gets blocked up.
“Come 6pm it’s really busy in the run up to Halloween. We get on average 200 people throughout the day.
“People say it’s fantastic. The kids don’t want to go home. They love it.
“Some of the kids are scared but still want to come back. It’s so lovely to see a smile on their faces.
“There’s pensioners who come down to see it from the nursing home.
“Before we started decorating this year there was a child on their way to school and I could hear him whispering ‘there’s the Halloween lady’. I thought ‘I’ve never been called that before’.
“I couldn’t say how much I’ve spent on it over the years, but it must be hundreds.
“Family members often buy stuff and we all throw our pennies in a pot through the year so we can buy things come Halloween.”
Mary is always stocked with sweets for trick or treaters, said the display is particularly impressive at night time when a projector shows zombies appearing to prowl around the bedroom upstairs.
Mary claims the scene was so realistic that three old ladies even asked who she’d got to dress up for it.
She now stands in her front garden with a bucket every evening in the run up to October 31 – and has raised thousands of pounds for charity over the years.
Mary, who is raising money for Zoe’s Place Baby Hospice, said: “We’ve had strangers donating things. We came home last year and there was a big box of mannequin heads on the doorstep. We wrapped material around them and put masks on them so they could go on the garage.
“We had a donation from the local shop thanks to one of their staff members who has been coming to see it with his son for the last five years. He came with a gravestone and three big bags of sweets.
“We’ve got a ghost that goes up and down, a giant spider above the window, four witches sitting around a table and lots of graves.
“The children say ‘it’s sick’ which my daughter tells me means it’s good.
“People started knocking on the door asking where they could leave the money so we thought we’d start doing it for charity. We started standing outside with a bucket.
“The first year we raised cash for Macmillan and for the last few years for Alder Hey Children’s Hospital. We’ve raised about £10,000 for them over the last couple of years.
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