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Alton Towers has announced its opening date for the 2010 season - a date which is also likely to see the opening of its long-awaited SW6 rollercoaster.

The park will open fully on Saturday March 20, with SW6 (which will be renamed prior to opening) expected to open on or around the same date. A more limited opening will take place from February 13-21, but this will probably include only a limited range of attractions - details are yet to be confirmed by the park.

Alton Towers has a history of new attraction opening dates coinciding with the start of the season. This was the case for Air, the park's most recent "Secret Weapon" (SW) project, which opened in March 2002.

Little is known about the new coaster, except that it will include world's first features - typical of "Secret Weapon" coasters, which have included the world's first inverted rollercoaster (Nemesis), first vertical drop coaster (Oblivion) and first flying coaster (Air). It is believed to be a steel rollercoaster with forwards and backwards sections, possibly with a "dark forest" theme.

You can keep an eye on the opening dates for new attractions over at Theme Park Tourist's "New Attraction Watch".

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