Trick or treat hotspots named

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Two children dressed in their Halloween costumes hold pumpkin-shaped lanterns while walking on their way to ask for candies from neighbors the night before Halloween in Beijing, China, Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2013. (AP Photo/Alexander F. Yuan)Milton Keynes, Stockport and Leeds have been named as England's top trick or treating hotspots for Halloween.

But scary costume-clad sweet hunters heading for Middlesbrough, Huddersfield and Oldham may want to re-think their plans as these were identified as the least favourable places by property search website Zoopla, which looked at factors including house prices as well as crime and road accident rates.

Milton Keynes topped Zoopla's "trick or treat index", with its relatively low road traffic accident rate of 0.24 incidents involving pedestrians per 1,000 residents, as well as low crime rates. Its high scores for safety meant that it came out best, despite homes there being valued at slightly lower than the average property price of £250,000 across England.

Stockport, which was also found to have relatively low crime and accident rates, came second in the study, with Leeds ranked in third position due to its high housing density and relatively low crime.
Middlesbrough, with its relatively low number of households and a crime rate of 0.74 violent incidents per 1,000 residents compared with Milton Keynes' rate of 0.26, came out bottom of Zoopla's research.

Within London, the top potential places for trick or treating were found to be Barnet, Bromley and Richmond-upon-Thames. These boroughs had a combination of high average property values, of £525,578, £378,639 and £688,732 respectively as well as low incidents of crime and road traffic accidents compared with the rest of the capital, the study said.

Zoopla also looked at streets in the country which are aptly-named for Halloween. Streets with the word devil in the title were found to be the most valuable, with properties in these roads worth £534,885 typically.

The streets it looked at include Seven Devils Lane in Saffron Walden, Essex, where homes are worth £872,481 on average. Meanwhile properties in Devils Lane, Liphook, Hampshire are typically valued at £464,301.

Roads with the word grave were found to have the next highest average values at £409,677, while those with witch in the title came in 10th place, behind street names including the words dead, moon, crow, broom and bat. Streets including the word witch include Witch Close in East Stour, Gillingham, Dorset, where homes are typically valued at £238,636.

Lawrence Hall, Zoopla spokesman, said: " Seasoned trick or treaters know the secrets to securing the best Halloween haul and stay safe while doing so.

"The combination of a high density of affluent homes along with good road safety and low crime is the key to success on Halloween. Home owners in Milton Keynes might want to stock up on treats, or they may find themselves on the end of a trick or two."

Zoopla's trick or treat research was based on four factors which were each given equal weighting. These were house values according to Zoopla's website, housing density, official crime figures and Government records on road traffic accident rates.

The largest towns and cities in England were scored on this basis, with higher scores suggesting these areas are better for trick or treating.

Here are the best towns and cities for trick or treating according to Zoopla, with average property values there followed by the number of households, the number of incidents of violent crime per 1,000 residents, the number of pedestrian-related road traffic accidents per 1,000 residents and the overall score:

1. Milton Keynes, £224,183, 105,981, 0.26, 0.24, 127

2. Stockport, £202,312, 114,783, 0.22, 0.31, 124

3. Leeds, £170,352, 303,937, 0.20, 0.51, 119

=4. Birmingham, £153,106, 464,587, 0.13, 0.55, 114

=4. Reading, £308,375, 139,931, 0.44, 0.41, 114

6. Southampton, £223,271, 190,762, 0.34, 0.51, 113

=7. Bristol, £233,406, 361,584, 0.46, 0.51, 111

=7. Coventry, £157,587, 158,129, 0.26, 0.40, 111

9. Sheffield, £161,058, 290,065, 0.20, 0.52, 110

10. Swindon, £187,815, 109,979, 0.31, 0.30, 109

And here are the towns and cities that came out worst in Zoopla's trick or treat research, with average property values there followed by the number of households, the number of incidents of violent crime per 1,000 residents, the number of pedestrian-related road traffic accidents per 1,000 residents and the overall score:

1. Middlesbrough, £133,384, 89,801, 0.74, 0.56, 25

2. Huddersfield, £151,964, 92,752, 0.58, 0.81, 30

3. Oldham, £124,782, 90,019, 0.38, 0.48, 49

4. Preston, £165,631, 130,329, 0.73, 0.85, 54

5. Hull, £114,371, 150,578, 0.44, 0.56, 63

6. Brighton, £288,519, 96,173, 0.63, 0.65, 64

7. Nottingham, £156,342, 352,596, 0.73, 0.67, 67

8. Lincoln, £158,045, 97,159, 0.88, 0.25, 73

9. Barnsley, £122,354, 94,502, 0.14, 0.48, 75

10. Bradford, £118,414, 144,141, 0.20, 0.64, 76

And here are the average values of homes in streets whose names include words associated with Halloween, according to Zoopla's website:

1. Devil, £534,885

2. Grave, £409,677

3. Dark, £343,318

4. Dead, £321,048

5. Moon, £308,498

6. Crow, £280,333

7. Broom, £246,078

8. Bat, £237,595

9. Cemetery, £166,709

10. Witch, £160,856