Halloween approaches and now that the clocks have gone back and it’s dark much earlier in the evening, there’s plenty to do in London if you want to celebrate all things spooky and supernatural.
Woman in Black is a fantastic ghost story and the theatre version is, in my opinion, much better and much scarier than the film. I’ve seen it three times now and still let out a scream of fear even when I know what’s coming. Check out tickets here.
Ghost Stories at the Arts Theatre in Leicester Square has the tantalising description of mixing “the best of theatre with the buzz of a thrill-ride, delivering a truly terrifying theatrical experience”. I haven’t seen it yet but it’s back by popular demand and there are extra tickets available for Halloween with a top price ticket offer from Official London Theatre. Check it out here.
Jeremy Dyson (part of the League of Gentleman team) is living up to his name as master of the macabre. Not only did he write and direct Ghost Stories (see above) but he is screening four of his fave horror flicks at the Curzon Soho. Rumours are, that along with the showing of the films and encouraging audience members to arrive in costume, he’s likely to be reading some horror stories from his new book as well as playing some voodoo-themed songs with his band.
Time Out has a round-up of where to go to catch the best in horror – old classics as well as modern releases. Click here for more details.
Similarly, View London has a list of Halloween events taking place in cinemas and other venues across London. Click here for more info.
GHOST WALKS AND OTHER HAUNTED TOURS
I’ve spotted some special offers on tickets for some ghostly meanderings…
Great British Tours are doing a London Ghost Walk that’s less than half the normal price. I found this deal through Amazon Local – click here if you want to check it out.
On the same site there is an offer for a Jack the Ripper Tour as well. Click on this link to view the offer.
Official London Theatre is also doing a special offer if you book their Haunted Theatreland tour, although according to their website, there doesn’t seem to be any tours available on Halloween. However, if you’re interested in theatre and in the history of the West End, there are plenty of theatres dating back a hundred years or more that are said to be haunted, with Drury Lane Theatre being perhaps the most famous with reported sightings of a grey, shadowy figure at the back of auditoriums and down quiet corridors (although that could just be Cameron Macintosh checking up on his productions!)
If you’d like to know more about paranormal activity or scary locations in the capital, then have a look at the sites below:
Still not enough to satisfy you hard-core gore fans out there? Well, feast your eyeballs on some weird and wonderful exhibits at the Hunterian Museum and The Old Operating Theatre in the roof space of a baroque church near London Bridge. The old operating table still has the original saw marks made from operations in the pre-anaesthetic days. Ouch!
For a genuinely creepy experience, have a wander round the decaying Victorian tombs of Highgate Cemetary, especially as the light begins to fade….whooooaaa
There’s many a “resting” actor who’s worked at the London Dungeons and the London Bridge Experience, both of which are huge tourist attractions and very popular with visitors. There’s also immersive, interactive fun (if you can call it that) at the Clink Museum, built on the site of London’s oldest prison where visitors can handle olde worlde torture devices and learn all about prison life back then.
If you prefer your Halloween scares to be a little more romantic, then there’s always the choice of a horse-drawn carriage ride through Richmond Park at night. Set against the clip-clopping of hooves and a backdrop of trees silhouetted by the moonlight you can hear tales of Highwaymen, ghosts and a Victorian murder whilst sipping Sloe Gin. That would be my top Halloween choice! Check ticket prices and availability here.
All Hail All Hallow’s Eve!