Warwickshire Police issued tips for a safe and fun Halloween - including ‘trick-or-treat’ etiquette that could help spare awkwardness.
A spokesman said: “This Halloween, we want you to have a safe, fun and rewarding time. So we’re offering advice to whitewalkers, clowns, witches and wizards, as well as the general public.”
The advice given includes: “If you see a home displaying ‘no trick-or-treat’ posters please respect this. Instead, visit a home that’s welcoming visitors - you can usually tell as these are displaying illuminated pumpkins and other decorations.
“Trick-or-treaters should never go into a stranger’s house.
“Young people should never go trick-or-treating alone - they must always be accompanied by a responsible adult.
“October nights are dark so keep to well-lit areas. Wear bright clothing and/or reflective strips, and always carry a torch.
“Remember to be safe near roads and driveways, even around quieter residential areas.”
Halloween can be a worrying and intimidating time for the elderly, vulnerable or those who live alone.
It can also be a nuisance for people whose evenings are interrupted by trick-or-treaters knocking on their door.
“Please be mindful that your Halloween fun could bother other people. We want you to have a great time, but ask that you behave with respect and courtesy to those around you,” the police spokesman said.
“Officers from your police Safer Neighbourhood Team will be carrying out patrols in the evenings around Halloween to make sure that people who are trick-or-treating are doing so in a friendly manner and not causing a nuisance.
“Warwickshire Police advise that any reports of anti-social behaviour (at any time of the year) will be investigated. That behaviour could include deliberately seeking to scare, harass, distress or alarm other people. It’s not #justaprank.
“Anti-social behaviour could result in arrest or prosecution if a criminal offence is committed.”
To report anti-social behaviour phone the Warwickshire Police non-emergency number 101.
If you feel threatened, if it’s an emergency, or if a crime is in progress, phone 999.
If you rather your home was not visited, download our ‘sorry no trick or treat’ poster to display in your window.