Zombie hunt is the way to help community cohesion

Rick's talent makes Lionel Messi look average                                           Picture: Martin Rickett/PA Wire

RICK JACKSON: How I led Pompey to European glory

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There’s nothing quite like sending a text that says ‘sorry can’t make it tonight, out zombie-hunting’.

I don’t know what it is about zombies – perhaps it’s something to do with Shaun of the Dead, The Walking Dead plus any number of other films – but as a country we seem to be consumed by a zombie fascination.

Remember the Freedom of Information request last year to Leicester council about what to do if a zombie invasion happened?

We’re all obsessed I tell you. You can even do 10km runs through ‘zombie-infested’ woods these days.

So what is it that’s so appealing? The story never really varies – zombies come with their shuffling gait, dribbling, moaning etc etc and the few remaining humans have to decapitate them or run away really quickly.

And yet...I just couldn’t resist an evening of zombie-hunting at Portsmouth Guildhall.

Run by Dark Encounters (Google them as they’re on the lookout for zombie wannabees), I wasn’t too sure what to expect when I got there.

But what I did get was a guided tour into the depths of the Guildhall where, it seems, unbeknown to the good citizens of Portsmouth, there’s a re-animation facility for the dead.

I knew, as did the 20 or so other members of the tour, that it wasn’t real. But running around in the dark being yelled at by a tough blonde wielding a baseball bat while zombies appeared from the unlikeliest places and moaned in my general direction was awesome fun.

It was more than a little odd as the rational part of my brain was saying it was all made up, while the adrenalin coursing around my not insubstantial body was screaming at me to run away super-fast and barge through the slow women in front of me.

Who needs a gym when there are so many staircases to be climbed and corridors to jog along? Aerobics instructors are not needed for chivvying when the undead are on your tail.

What also surprised me was the way in which the group meshed, talking to one another and not acting as complete strangers. So that’s what we need for community cohesion – zombie-hunting.

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