Check the lockdown rules for trick-or-treating in your area

Halloween is usually full of pumpkins and ghouls, but this year things might look a bit different.

The annual spooky season will have to be celebrated in new ways for 2020 as the UK still battles to stem the spread of coronavirus.

Scary fancy dress parties will have to be postponed for next year as social distancing restrictions are still in place.

And many youngsters will be hoping they can swap face masks for ghost masks and roam the streets to trick or treat.

But all festivities will have to adhere to safety regulations and ensure that participants are being kept Covid-19 secure.

The annual Halloween custom of trick or treating dates back to at least the 1920s.

Children draped in costumes usually patrol towns for sweets and chocolate from participating neighbours.

But this year thing look set to be very different.

In Scotland, trick or treating has been strongly discouraged by the government, with the Deputy First Minister John Swinney telling parents it brings "an additional and avoidable risk" of spreading the bug.

He added: "Our clear advice for families is to avoid it."

And in Wales Halloween will fall during the 17 day firebreak lockdown, meaning that going door to door will be breaking the rules.

In England, whether you can trick or treat will depend on the tier your local area is in at the time.

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According to the BBC, in areas outside local lockdowns – so anywhere under Tier One – trick or treating may be carried out if it is socially distanced and sticks to the rules.

It would need to be done safely, in a group that still follows the 'rule of six' and using common sense.

So it might mean that only a few children, with an adult, can go door to door – as when somebody answers, they would count towards the rule of six.

The rule of six for Tier One, the medium alert level, includes kids of any age.

So four children, and an adult, could in theory form a group and be greeted by one neighbour with treats without flouting the restrictions.

And face-masks should be work when travelling between house to house, and hands should be sanitised before touching doorbells and gates.

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In Tier Two then the rule of six applies in private gardens and outdoor spaces and households must not mix indoors.

In the very high risk areas in Tier Three then household mixing indoors or out is completely banned, so trick or treating is off the cards.

A spokesman for Boris Johnson told the BBC that the rules in relation to the spooky celebrations are to do with households mixing.

He said: “The rules are those which apply to household mixing in general and what that means in practice is if you are in a very high alert level (Tier 3) then you cannot mix with other households indoors or in private outdoor spaces.

"If you're in a high Covid alert level (Tier 2) then the rule of six applies in private gardens and outdoor spaces but households must not mix indoors.

"And in terms of the medium alert level (Tier 1), you can meet indoors and outdoors in groups of no more than six people."

Parties would have to be subject to local restrictions and social distancing, so only very small gatherings in Tier One and no indoor bashes in Tiers Two or Three.

People should check with restrictions they are subject to before planning any ghoulish antics.

Other Halloween ideas could involve a movie night or pumpkin carving with your household.

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