For some, Halloween is all about the fancy dress and nocturnal fun and frolics. For others, however, All Hallows Eve is much more to do with the purely frightful (and, for some, utterly delightful). They want to be truly, appropriately scared; almost to the point of petrification. It just so happens that the City of London has a long (and chequered!) history, and within that history lay many a gruesome, horrific tale. So, why not take the opportunity to become more au fait with the capital’s spooky spots this year? The (not too tiny, please) kids will have goosebumps and be shiveringly impressed – and grown-ups can always grab a themed cocktail at a nearby bar after to take away the taste of fear…

1. Ghosts, Ghouls, and Graveyards – The Original Haunted History Tour @ Various

If you are literally seeking The Hidden Horrors of Haunted London, then this walking tour is for you. Beginning at 7pm on Friday 26th October outside The Lord Raglan Pub, the clocks won’t yet have gone back, but this spooky stroll will still be dark. One for urban history buffs, as well as budding horror writers seeking some aptly timed inspiration, the tour promises “churchyards to plague pits; hidden courtyards and narrow alleyways; haunted pubs to Roman ruins; not to mention execution grounds and time-worn churches”. We’re sold. Costs £10 per person.

2. City of London Cemetery and Crematorium @ Manor Park

With a half century history of complaints about a strange light emanating from one of the gravestones at night, and all those years without solving the cause of the eerie sight, you can be sure the chill factor is set to ‘hellishly freezing’ when and if you elect to wander around the City of London Cemetery and Crematorium this fine and frightening October (make it of a darkening evening for an even more haunted feel). A free option for those seeking a scare this month, be careful not to spill a piping hot drink on yourself when you jump at the next tombstone around the bend… Of course, the cemetery and its crematorium are still operational and lovely and offer beautiful flower bed surrounds for the dearly departed, etc. But channel your inner thrill-seeking child for one moment: was that a ghost over there..?

3. Old Operating Theatre Museum @ Tower Bridge

Situated in an herb garret of St. Thomas’ Church roof, and originally built for poor women in 1822, the theatre has been restored down to every last, gory detail. Saw movie fans will delight at the faint-worthy operating implements on display (re-enactments are sometimes held, as well). A highly atmospheric experience in the days approaching Halloween (mad and murderous doctor, anyone?), if your heart wasn’t already beating faster, be aware that the theatre is accessed via a 52-step vertiginously steep spiral staircase. The Old Operating Theatre Museum holds “weekly talks on the weekends on Victorian Surgery (mock-up demo) and The Gore Tour (how surgical instruments were used in the past)” – so, if you’re into all that, make it a Saturday or Sunday.  Maybe take some smelling salts…