15 New Rides and Attractions at UK Theme Parks for 2014By Nick Sim, Tuesday, January 14, 2014 08:02
Every year, theme parks in the UK open a host of new attractions with the aim of drawing in guests for repeat visits. 2014 will be no different. While there are no mega-attractions on the scale of 2013's The Smiler at Alton Towers, most major parks have something new up their sleeves.
Here's a round-up of the new rides and shows that you can expect to experience at UK theme parks during the coming year.
15. Something Special Sensory Garden (Alton Towers)
Following a deal with BBC Worldwide, a variety of kids' favourites will be joining the line-up of Alton Towers' new CBeebies Land area (which will replace the former Old MacDonald's Farmyard). Based around the popular Something Special show, which stars Mr Tumble, the walkthrough Something Special Sensory Garden will see guests following the Tumble Trail and looking inside Mr Tumble's spotty bag. As with the show, Makaton sign language will be used within the attraction, to aid in children's early development of language.
14. Victorian Carousel (Paultons Park)
Paultons Park will install an old-fashioned Victorian Carousel close to the Viking Boats Ride for the start of the 2014 season. It promises that "the magical, hand-crafted Carousel will transport guests back in time to enjoy the most iconic fairground ride of all, set in a beautiful period-themed garden."
13. Mr Bloom's Allotments (Alton Towers)
Designed to help children learn about the process of growing fruit and vegetables, this CBeebies Land attraction will be a hands-on attraction based on Mr Bloom's Nursery. The "magical shed" from the television show will be featured, with children able to "meet" the vegetables themselves.
12. Magic Mouse (Pleasurewood Hills)
One of the most popular attractions at Pleasurewood Hills during the early 2000s was the spinning Magic Mouse roller coaster. The park has been teasing its return in 2014, with the Twitter hashtag "#mouseisback".
In reality, the former Wild Mouse coaster from Flamingo Land is on its way to the park. It doesn't spin, but does feature a number of hairpin turns.
11. In The Night Garden Magical Boat Ride (Alton Towers)
The former Riverbank Eye-Spy attraction will undergo a complete CBeebies transformation to become the In The Night Garden Magical Boat Ride. Alton Towers promises that "colours, sights and sounds" will be used to "bring a picture book to life", with characters such as Iggle Piggle, Makka Pakka and Upsy Daisy all making appearances.
10. Angry Birds Dodgems (Thorpe Park)
Thorpe Park will open a new land themed around the Angry Birds mobile game for the 2014 season. This will feature a dodgems ride with cars themed around Red Bird and the Bad Piggies.
9. Scorpion Express (Chessington World of Adventures)
John Wardley's famous Runaway Train roller coaster will receive a makeover for the 2014 season, re-emerging as Scorpion Express. The Mexicana Area of the park will be renamed as "Scorpion Valley", with the coaster being set within "a land of sweeping sands and gold mines".
8. Nina's Science Lab (Alton Towers)
Based on Nina and the Neurons, Nina's Science lab will explain how the Neurons control human's five senses. The hands-on CBeebies Land attraction is designed to help kids learn how their body works.
7. Robin Hood 4D (Paultons Park)
Paultons Park's 4-D Cinema will screen Robin Hood 4D during 2014. The family adventure will follow Maid Marian as she falls for the reckless outlaw, and will boast moving chairs, wind, water and rumble effects.
6. Justin's House: Pie-O-Matic Factory (Alton Towers)
Based on the heavily-interactive Justin's House, the Pie-O-Matic factory will be an indoor play area that will see young guests helping Justin, Robert the Robert and Little Monster make custard pies. The attraction will be a rethemed version of Berry Bish Bash, and will form part of CBeebies Land.
5. Castaway Camp (LEGOLAND Windsor)
Castaway Camp, a play area featuring a fortress and battle ships, will be the sole new addition to Pirate Shores, the renamed Pirates Landing area at LEGOLAND Windsor.
4. Get Set Go Tree Top Adventure (Alton Towers)
The Squirrel Nutty Ride will be no more come May 2014 - it will be renamed as the Get Set Go Tree Top Adventure, offering views across CBeebies Land.
3. Angry Birds 4D Experience (Thorpe Park)
The headline attraction in Angry Birds Land will be the Angry Birds 4D Experience, which will use "high impact special effects" to bring the Angry Birds characters to life. It has been developed jointly by the game's creators, Rovio, and 3D animation specialist 3DBA. Simworx, which has devised a number of similar 4D attractions, is developing the 4D theatre that will house the attraction.
2. Postman Pat's Parcel Post (Alton Towers)
One of the headline attractions in CBeebies Land will be Postman Pat's Parcel Post, which will be an updated version of Old MacDonald's Tractor Ride. The tractors will be gone, replaced by miniature versions of Postman Pat's iconic red van. These will travel around Greendale, the village where Pat lives with Jess the Cat.
1. Air Race (Drayton Manor)
Drayton Manor has revealed that it will add a Zamperla Air Race attraction for the 2014 season - making it the only theme park in the UK to add a thrill ride for the new season.
Air Race will take riders on a "stomach-churning aerial adventure", turning them upside down at heights of up to eight metres. 24 riders will be accommodated in its six, four-seater aeroplanes, with "pilots" experiencing forces of almost 4G. The attraction is due to open in time for the school summer holidays, and will sit in the Action Park area of Drayton Manor alongside a host of other thrill rides.
You can keep up to date with the latest confirmed and rumored opening dates for new attractions through Theme Park Tourist's "New Attraction Watch" section, and by signing up for our weekly newsletter.