As 31 October gets closer it’s time to embrace the weird, spooky and downright terrifying. In an ancient city like London, haunted houses and ghostly happening could be lurking around any street corner. So, if you like your Halloween to be more trick than treat, check out some of the scariest places to visit, within reach of Islington.

The Viktor Wynd Museum of Curiosities, Hackney

Although we’ve no reports of it being haunted, the Viktor Wynd Museum is weird, eclectic and not a little creepy. Pay a visit and you’ll view everything from the bones of a dodo and a two-headed kitten to occult paintings and … some ominous-looking Happy Meal toys. According to Time Out, “It will scare the bejesus out of you”.

Sutton House, Hackney

This National Trust property dating from the 16th century has been the site of many a haunting. Listen carefully, and you might hear the howling of the dogs, which belonged to John Machell, a wool merchant who lived in the house during the 1550s. If the temperature drops, look out for the ghost of the White Lady – thought to be Frances Machell who tragically died giving birth to twins in 1574.

Bleeding Heart Yard, Farringdon

If you’ve ever wondered where this pleasant cobbled square got its name, it’s as chilling as you might have imagined. In 1626 the mutilated body of society beauty, Lady Elizabeth Hatton was found in the courtyard, her heart still pumping blood, it’s claimed.

The Old Queen’s Head, Angel

This Islington pub is said to be haunted by both a lady and a little girl, who is reported to weep, slam doors and has even overtaken drinkers as they climb the stairs.

The Spaniards Inn, Hampstead Heath

Seeped in the underworld – criminal and otherwise, this Hampstead pub was reputedly the birthplace of legendary highwayman, Dick Turpin. His ghost is said to haunt the premises, as is the spirit of the pub’s eponymous Spanish landlord, Juan Porero.

St Bartholomew’s Hospital Museum, Farringdon

The museum in the north wing of Britain’s oldest hospital (it dates from 1123), includes old surgical equipment, marble heads and documents signed by Henry VIII. What gives it the chill factor are giant haunting canvasses above the grand staircase, based on the Scriptures, and painted by the artist William Hogarth.

The Parkland Walk Spriggan, Finsbury Park

Head for this overgrown disused railway line between Finsbury Park and Alexandra Palace for a parkland walk that is as unsettling as it’s lush and green. As you pass Crouch End, don’t be startled by the ‘spriggan’ the ominous spirit lurking in an old railway arch.

Read about more scary places across London on the Time Out website.