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Best areas for trick-o-treating in West London

(28 Posts)
LondonExpatLife Wed 25-Oct-17 18:38:28

Halloween is approaching. This will be my family’s second Halloween in London. Last year, I waited too long to go out with the kids and we encountered homes that ran out of candy or had stopped giving.
Given it gets dark here so early, , what is the best time to go and where is the place to go? I know homes around Philmore Gardens / High Street Kensington is a popular spot. I was told there is an area where a lot of bankers live that is popular - live music, lots of decorations. Any suggestions?

xyzandabc Wed 25-Oct-17 18:42:40

Surely you just go round your nearest few streets? It's not something you commute to to get the 'best' area.
I would find it quite rude if people started turning up on my doorstep who weren't local. Local kids from the surrounding streets great but I'm not here to provide sweets to everyone in a whole city.
Or does London work differently to the rest of the country?

xyzandabc Wed 25-Oct-17 18:44:14

For time I'd say from sunset until around 7.30. Later than that and littles will be going to bed

sparechange Wed 25-Oct-17 18:45:53

You go to your local area! You don't travel to where you think the richest pickings might be confused
I've never heard of live music being part of trick or treating in HSK either

If you register with Nextdoor.com for your neighbourhood, they've done a map this year of which houses will be participating and which won't although the general rule of thumb is that only houses with decorations up outside are taking part

goingagain Wed 25-Oct-17 18:54:34

Agreed! Go in your local area!

I live in an area in SW London (which I will not disclose!) where certain streets - mine included - make a big effort on Halloween, decorating houses etc and we give out a lot of sweets. The houses are big and lots of bankers live here thlhmm I reckon we gave sweets out to maybe 200 children last year before we ran out. Not exaggerating. I have three little ones (6 and under) and I let them go to the local houses in our road for half an hour (dressed up of course).

It has become increasingly obvious however that our road and the couple of roads parallel who also go to this effort has become a ‘destination’ Halloween area. Some of the kids knocking are in their mid teens and not even dressed up (#jogon). It gets a bit much.

I put a sign up when the kids go to bed (about 7:30 ish at Halloween) not to knock / no more sweets etc. It is always the teenagers not dressed up who choose to ignore this...!

Go to your neighbours!

LondonExpatLife Fri 27-Oct-17 11:14:28

When I was a kid, growing up in California, trick-o-treating involved knocking on our neighbour's doors. The local park's community centre had activities one could stop and enjoy too. However, I would say that Halloween and trick-o-treating have changed. It certainly has become more commercial. When I was a kid, homes were decorated but nothing like today and stores were not selling "halloween lights". It's great to see the decor. Kids love it and I think adults enjoy neighborhood decorating competitions.
With regards to candy giving, that has changed too. My parents now give out full size candy bars - reflection of seniors who love to spoil little ones and see them smile. You also do see lots of neighbourhoods targeted for trick-o-treating. One of the beach communities near my house in California, is a top trick-o-treating destination. It's easy to walk along the board-walk, see lots of decorated homes, and be able to knock on many doors in a short distance. Families often eat dinner in town.
Given what I saw last year in London, I think trick-o-treating in certain neighbourhoods has also become popular / destination to go. I have to imagine St John's Wood is a top place to go. Lots of Americans. My neighborhood, also seems to be popular. I don't think that many kids live in the area. I was not sure how much candy to buy but I thought I had enough. On my way home from a school event, I got a call from home saying we were running out of candy and it was only 6pm! I stopped at TESCO and restocked with what little was left. That ran out too and I ended up passing out some of my children's school snacks the last hour. I also had teenagers knocking. It's once a year and if the teenagers have the willingness to ask, I am happy to give a treat.
I have many fond memories of trick-o-treating as a child. I want my children to have those too. Walking around a neighborhood that has carved pumpkins, decor, music, fog, etc is part of the fun. That's why I asked "Mumsnet" members what they thought is the best area for trick-o-treating.

2014newme Fri 27-Oct-17 11:21:02

Hi op, it's the same in UK as in USA, you go to your neighbours you don't travel to other areas.

sparechange Fri 27-Oct-17 11:22:06

The key here is ‘when you were in California’

It is a very different tradition in the UK. You surely didn’t expect it to be an identical custom in London? confused

2014newme Fri 27-Oct-17 11:23:51

@sparechange The op says that in california they went to neighbours. Would you not agree it's the same here?

TerrifyingFeistyCupcake Fri 27-Oct-17 11:26:45

What the actual?

You do it in your local area, you don't travel to where the best "pickings" are. That's some serious CF-ness. And you get out earlier this year if you're so troubled by people coming out.

TerrifyingFeistyCupcake Fri 27-Oct-17 11:26:57

*running out.

FairfaxAikman Fri 27-Oct-17 11:27:26

It’s not trick or treating, it’s guising. Harrumph. Bah humbug (or whatever the Halloween equivalent is) wink

venys Fri 27-Oct-17 11:33:08

I have heard kids in New Zealand being transported to the richer neighbourhoods too. It's a bit arse really.

LondonExpatLife Fri 27-Oct-17 11:42:27

I think in London children go to "other" neighbourhoods too for the better decorated homes and candy. I was shocked by how many kids showed up at my London door last year There were way more kids than homes giving out candy in my area.

TheVanguardSix Fri 27-Oct-17 11:43:07

Fellow Californian here! wink But a 20 year Londoner!

Best areas: The Boltons and SW10 area (Cathcart Road/Redcliffe Gardens)

Barnes SW13: specifically around Cleveland Road area

Chiswick W4: Park Road/Staveley
Road

TheVanguardSix Fri 27-Oct-17 11:44:33

Those 3 areas are ones I've lived/live in so haven't travelled anywhere outside my neighbourhood(s).

SuperPug Fri 27-Oct-17 11:44:58

So because it's more commercialised, you're going to target richer areas? The comment about bankers is really hmm as well. Sorry OP, it sounds grabby.
I really don't see why you can't trick or treat round where you live and buy your children more sweets if they're desperate for them. Bit of a weird lesson to be teaching them tbh.

SuperPug Fri 27-Oct-17 11:45:48

How weird to be posting roads where people live as hot spots...

SavageCabbage Fri 27-Oct-17 11:48:51

Go out as soon as it starts to get dark. To the streets around your house and go to houses where they have a pumpkin out or some other Halloween symbols and don’t go to the ones that don’t.

If your children are school age, maybe approach some parents and ask if they want to do it together for extra excitement. Or neighbours with children.

GreenFingersWouldBeHandy Fri 27-Oct-17 11:49:29

I've never even understood what the whole trick or treat thing is about. So you knock on a stranger's door, ask for sweets then threaten menace if you don't get given some for free? WTF!?!? What does that have to do with Halloween?

TheVanguardSix Fri 27-Oct-17 11:49:35

Why is it weird? People give out sweets, decorate their houses (lots of Americans in SW13 and W4, though W4 is livelier OP). They obviously want the footfall otherwise they wouldn't pull out the bells, whistles, and pumpkins.

GreenFingersWouldBeHandy Fri 27-Oct-17 11:52:21

I just don't understand what free sweets has to do with celebrating the dead... can anyone else explain it?

Wishingandwaiting Fri 27-Oct-17 11:52:40

Hamilton terrace at Johns wood

Wishingandwaiting Fri 27-Oct-17 11:53:18

Unbelievable houses. Lots of Americans.
One screens Scream by Michael Jackson on to the house.

thecatfromjapan Fri 27-Oct-17 11:53:49

It's not about 'richer pickings', if I understand the OP correctly.

Some areas of London go all out for Hallowe'en: the streets will be decorated with pumpkins along the street, the houses will be really done up, the families who have stayed at home will be really dressed up, with some amazing costumes, there will be lots and lots of children in the streets and they will be very welcome. The whole area transforms into a very child-friendly space.

Those areas are often - though not always - areas with significant numbers of American ex-pats. The City employs a lot of ex-pats.

All that being said, I still think it's best to go around your local area. The whole joy - for a child - is the local area being transformed into something strange - that and bumping into your mates.

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