Get spooked out at Lon­don’s scari­est sights – be brave and go on ceme­tery tours, dungeon ad­ven­tures and ghost hunts.

Have you got what it takes to sur­vive Lon­don over Hal­loween? Visit the cap­i­tal’s Vic­to­rian ceme­ter­ies, an an­cient prison and dun­geons or go on a ghost tour to find out, says Sarah Riches

Where London - - Contents -

What with the plague, wars and the great fire, Lon­don has more than its fair share of tor­tured souls.

The ques­tion is, where will you find them this Hal­loween? Start your hunt at one of the Mag­nif­i­cent Seven ceme­ter­ies – Ken­sal Green, West Nor­wood, High­gate, Ab­ney Park, Nun­head, Bromp­ton and Tower Ham­lets – which were built be­tween 1832 and 1841. See the grave of Karl Marx at High­gate, ex­plore a derelict Gothic chapel in Ab­ney Park or visit Ken­sal Green, an eerily beau­ti­ful rest­ing place in­spired by Paris’s Père Lachaise ceme­tery. Ev­ery Sun­day you can take a guided tour of the 72-acre’s 130 listed tombs, memo­ri­als and mau­soleums ( High­gate Ceme­tery, Swain’s Lane, N6 6PJ; Ab­ney Park Ceme­tery, Stoke New­ing­ton High St, N16 0L; Ken­sal Green Ceme­tery, Har­row Rd, W10 4RA).

Al­ter­na­tively, take a Haunted Hap­pen­ings ghost hunt around The Ragged School

Mu­seum (29 Oct). Once the doors are locked and the lights go out, there’s no go­ing back. Noted for its ap­pari­tions and pol­ter­geist ac­tiv­ity, some mem­bers of staff refuse to ac­cess parts of the school alone. Tor­mented cries, laugh­ter and bangs have been recorded on sound de­vices and you might also hear foot­steps in empty rooms. Try out a ouija board, dows­ing rods, glass div­ina­tion and ta­ble tip­ping, ask spir­its ques­tions us­ing a sen­si­tive recorder in séances or brave a lone vigil in an up­stairs cup­board or the base­ment – if you dare ( The Ragged School Mu­seum, 46-50 Cop­per­field Rd, E3 4RR).

The Lon­don Dungeon (p. 27) will lure you into a witch-fin­der’s den that’s in­spired by Matthew Hop­kins, a witch-hunter in the 1600s. Dur­ing the multi-sen­sory ex­pe­ri­ence you’ll be sub­jected to tales of sorcery and witch­craft be­fore ‘Hop­kins’ de­mands a con­fes­sion. You’ll also meet a coven of witches, watch witch shows and hear about his­tory’s great­est rogues. The chances of bump­ing into a tor­tured spirit at The Lon­don Bridge Ex­pe­ri­ence & Tombs (22-31 Oct; p. 27) are high when you fac­tor in that the at­trac­tion is built on a former plague pit. Over 16s can join in with Phobo­pho­bia and en­ter into the Night­mare of the Ven­tril­o­quist. The pup­pets want you to join in their games, but be­ware – they don’t have strings to hold them back. Sounds too scary? Then lower the fear fac­tor at the Tower of Lon­don’s af­ter-hours illustration class, Blood and Jew­els (11 Oct; p. 28). As you hear le­gends, such as an at­tempted theft by Colonel Blood, you’ll sketch con­tem­po­rary crowns made by the designer Hys­te­ria Ma­chine as well as cos­tumed char­ac­ters in­clud­ing Kika von Macabre and a cat­a­comb saint dressed in gold and pearls. Spooky!

Clock­wise from this pic­ture: Ken­sal Green Ceme­tery; Tower of Lon­don; a witch at The Lon­don Dungeon

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