Exposed VS Escape Sheffield

The game is afoot, dear readers! This month the guys at Escape Sheffield invited us to try sussing a way out of their Sherlock Holmes room using nothing but our considerable powers of deduction. Could we crack the case? Or would we be Sher-locked in forever? (so sorry about that). Read on to find out…

The last few Exposed VS challenges have seen us shovelling fiery hot curry into our mouths, hurtling down a steep mountain bike track and polishing off a burger the size of a small child. Might sound like a nightmare to some, but despite a few bruises and dodgy tummies we fared quite well and had a good giggle while doing it.

In short: when it comes to tasks requiring a touch of bravery alongside a whole heap of gluttony and foolishness, we tend to be alright. But actually using our noggins to solve intricate puzzles and codes while locked inside a small room? Now that’s an entirely different kettle of fish – and one, if I’m being entirely honest, I wasn’t feeling too confident about. These feelings of doubt weren’t helped when two of our staff members managed to get lost on en-route to the venue. Probably also worth mentioning that our office is literally 500 yards down the road. We could be in for a long night…

Once inside we were greeted warmly by the Escape Sheffield team – Ashleigh and Lois – who showed us the lockers and advised nipping to the loo beforehand. Wetting your kecks in front of fellow team members wasn’t going to help anyone here. Once bladders were suitably relieved, we were taken to what would become our prison for the next 60 minutes – 221B Baker Street. Once inside Sherlock Holmes’ rather cosy little abode, Lois explained that we’d been assigned by uber-badass Moriarty to help bring down the famous detective. We had to help solve the riddles, find the iconic pipe and hat then escape before Sherlock returned – presumably to knock eight bells out of all of us.

The door slammed shut and we took in our surroundings, searching for clues, codes or anything significant which could lead to combinations for the various padlocked cabinets and drawers dotted around. In hindsight, we should have calmly allocated areas of the room to search and carefully discussed each object of interest as it was found; but in reality we just ransacked the place, shouted over each other a lot and almost broke a big clock. Confession time: I’d snuck in two pints of Guinness at The Grapes beforehand, and let me tell you, I was regretting that decision when the first couple of clues came rolling in. You need to be at the top of your game for this sort of thing, and my sluggish thought processes were far from an asset to the team. It was at this point I decided to revert to a tactic which has served me well over the years: look incredibly busy and hope no one notices. So I stared intently at clues, stroked my chin a lot and made contemplative sounds like “Mmm”, “Ahh” and “Ohh”. Thankfully, the rest of the Exposed team were bang on form – particularly Will and Katie, who seemed to get the hang of things early doors, and eventually the pieces started to slowly fall in place.

Naturally, we can’t give the game away – but there were some big surprises as we progressed through the challenge and the whole thing was a real buzz, if not slightly nerve-shattering at the same time. With just a mere 3 minutes and 34 seconds left we found the final clue and escaped the room. CASE CLOSED, MY FRIENDS!

It was tough, it was pretty damn claustrophobic and we were all on the verge of a nervous breakdown towards the end, but it was all worth it when we solved that final clue and the door to freedom clicked open. Stick that in yer pipe, Mr Holmes!

The scores so far:
Exposed: 31
Challengers: 40
Draws: 3

Fancy a go yourself? Book at

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