Mum-of-three hits out at killjoy "idiot" who spoilt a north west park dinosaur run
A childminder who spent the Easter weekend cheering up youngsters by wandering around a park in a dinosaur costume says she has “no regrets” - after one “idiot” phoned the police
Samantha Clarkson, 47, and five pals donned the hilarious 7ft-tall inflatable outfits on Saturday (Apr 3) before going for a walk at Moss Bank Park in Bolton.
Their eye-catching display attracted hundreds of giddy youngsters, who could be seen watching on in wonder as Samantha and her mates plodded around the public space.
However, their laughter turned to tears when a man approached one member of the group and asked them if they had a permit before reporting them to the police.
As a result, Samantha and her fellow dinosaurs, played by her husband Dean, friends Deborah and Warren and daughters in law Ella and Emily, were forced to flee the park.
Samantha, a cildminder, said: “We were having a wonderful time and kids were loving it, then we found out some idiot had phoned the police, I couldn’t believe it.
“We were just trying to cheer some kids up after such a miserable year, we weren’t hurting anyone.
“We had no choice but to leave because we didn’t want to risk getting arrested, although watching the police chase six dinosaurs would have been funny.”
Prior to visiting the park, Samantha posted on Facebook to let locals know so that they could attend with their kids.
She said that on Saturday her two sons, Noah and Harry, went along in order to ensure the crowd remained socially distanced and that no one got too close to the dinosaurs.
Samantha added: “We were concerned about the safety aspect and we made sure that everyone would take care, that’s why my sons came.
“Everyone was being sensible anyway, there were no problems at all.”
Samantha, who runs a childminding business, said after around 90 minutes of entertaining kids at the park one of her sons was approached by the man in question.
She said: “At first it was like he was just interested in what we were doing, he was asking questions.
“But then he said, ‘have you got a permit?’
“And after that, he rang the police, which is when we knew we had to leave. We didn’t want to get arrested or anything.”
Samantha added: “It was such a shame because the kids haven’t had much to do over the past 12 months, which is why we wanted to go out in the outfits.
“The idea was just to give people a bit of a laugh, and it was going really well until this man rang the police.”
Samantha, from Darwen, said she “couldn’t sleep” on Saturday night because she was “so angry” about the altercation with the man at the park.
She added: “When I woke up on Sunday I said, ‘that’s it I’m going back out’.
“I didn’t want to let that man decide what we could and couldn’t do, so Dean and I headed back out in the outfits.
“We had a great time and the kids loved it.
“Luckily we didn’t see the man again.”
Samantha purchased the outfits for between £35 and £40 on Amazon. They come equipped with a power pack so the suit can be inflated, as seen in the pictures.
She has her sights set on breaking the world record for ‘most people in dinosaur outfits in one place’, which is currently set at 252.
Samantha said: “It would be great to get the record, I think we can do it. Let’s hope no one calls the police.”