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Pleasurewood Hills Reviews and Guide
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Lowestoft, Suffolk, England
H.I.G. Capital France
Located close to Lowestoft on the East Anglian coast, Pleasurewood Hills is the region's largest theme park. While it is primarily aimed at families, the park does host a handful of thrill rides, including the towering Jolly Roger drop tower and the Wipeout boomerang roller coaster. The park's most unique offering is its animal shows, which include performances by sea lions and parrots. Long-serving mascot Woody Bear still plays a central role.
History: Pleasurewood Hills was first opened in 1982 by entrepeneur Joe Larter, and benefited from a booming theme park market in the UK at the time. It originally marketed itself as an "American theme park", offering a limited number of family-friendly attractions. While it was able to expand significantly until the mid-90s, the park's coastal location soon began to be a limiting factor on attendance. After its second owners, RKF Entertainment, plunged into bankruptcy, it changed hands several times, even briefly featuring a Mr Blobby show after a deal was struck with Noel Edmonds' Crinkley Bottom TV Studios. After a period of decline, its fortunes improved following a 2004 takeover by French firm Grévin & Cie, who carried out a series of basic landscaping and theming improvements and added the Wipeout roller coaster. More recently, the park was bought out by H.I.G. Capital France, which has since spent several millions pounds on new rides.