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Age UK advice this Halloween

Published on 28 October 2011 01:30 PM

Age UK offers advice on how to avoid getting ‘spooked' this Halloween

Halloween can be great fun for children and young people, with trick or treating playing a big part in their ghoulish adventures. However, some older people who are at home on Halloween may feel scared or threatened, so Age UK is offering some helpful advice.

Tips for trick or treaters:

  • Don't go to houses that aren't lit up as the homeowners may not want to be disturbed
  • Always ensure that young children are accompanied by an adult
  • Make sure you know whose doorbell you are ringing. If it's an older person, consider whether your call might scare them. Perhaps you could take a treat to an older person that you know in your community before it gets dark.

Advice for older people:

  • Always put the door chain on and look out of the window or spy hole to see who is there before opening the door
  • Take particular care if there is more than one person on your doorstep, which you should be able to check if you have a spy hole installed
  • If in doubt or if you do not feel safe opening the door, then don't. Often, and quite unnecessarily, people feel embarrassed about refusing to let someone in at the door. Only open the door if you feel safe to do so.
  • If you are especially worried, you could invite a friend or relative around for dinner. A fun evening should take your mind off of unexpected callers.

Michelle Mitchell, Charity Director at Age UK, said: 'Halloween can be a particularly stressful time for some older people, particularly those who are in poor health or living alone. Noise at night and unexpected callers can cause anxiety for people who feel vulnerable. We encourage those who will be out trick or treating this Halloween to have fun but to do so responsibly and with respect.'

Hopefully, by being aware of these precautionary measures, older people will feel safer in their homes this Halloween. Age UK has produced a free information guide, ‘Staying Safe', which contains information about personal security at home and is available free of charge from Age UK Advice on 0800 169 65 65 or by visiting

Age UK also provides its HandyVan services to help older people with safety, security, repairs and adaptations in the home. Age UK has a fleet of 26 vans operating throughout the country offering services to people aged 60 or over who have assets of less than £20,000 (not including their home). This is an invaluable service where a handyperson visits homes to undertake works including fitting carbon monoxide detectors, grab rails, door and window locks and smoke alarms. For more information about the HandyVan service or to see if you can take advantage of a HandyVan in your area, contact 0845 026 1055. A number of local Age UKs across the country also provide handyperson services, please contact your local Age UK for more information.

- ENDS -

Notes to editors

Media contact:

Sarah Scott Tel: 020 3033 1434
Out of hours: 07071 243 243 28

Age UK

For media enquiries relating to Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland please contact the appropriate national office: Age Scotland on 0131 668 8055, Age Cymru on 029 2043 1562 and Age NI on 028 9024 5729. Age UK is the new force combining Age Concern and Help the Aged, dedicated to improving later life. We provide free information, advice and support to over five million people; commercial products and services to over one million customers; and research and campaign on the issues that matter to people in later life. Our work focuses on five key areas: money matters, health and well being, home and care, work and training and leisure and lifestyle. We work with our national partners, Age Scotland, Age Cymru and Age NI (together the Age UK Family), our local Age UK partners in England and local Age Concerns. We also work internationally for people in later life as a member of the DEC and with our sister charity Help Age International. Age UK is a charitable company limited by guarantee and registered in England (registered charity number 1128267 and company number 6825798). Age Concern England and Help the Aged (both registered charities), and their trading and other associated companies merged on the 1st April 2009. Together they have formed the Age UK Group ("we"). Charitable services are offered through Age UK and commercial products are offered by the Charity's trading companies, which donate their net profits to Age UK (the Charity).

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Last updated: Oct 06 2017

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