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  1. Well.. assuming that the Hotel gets the go-ahead on the opposite side of the park, that gives you 3 massive areas for expansion: The current Shark site, behind Swarm and Loggers / Slammer site. That would be suitable for 3 pretty big coasters / new areas and this is before you start looking at redeveloping older sites such as the current Blair Witch / Fungle Safari site, Neptune's Beach and X area. Quite how it will be "unrecognisable" remains to be seen in the LTDP, but I imagine that they will move quickly once they get the go-ahead from Lego (I believe that Alton and Gardaland have already had their "go-ahead"). They will also be prepping for London Resort to be competition, which isn't something you can just do over-night; they're already on the back-foot time-wise.
  2. And just to build on that.. in a perfect world, they are meant to be counted out and back in too; no paper copies should ever be left unaccounted for. Granted, this doesn't always happen, but every effort to keep them accounted for should be practiced at every opportunity (as Josh clarifies in the later post than this quoted one). Digitalisation of these documents is possible and causes an obvious issue; but a watermark such as "not for publication, internal use only" opens the "leaker" to prosecution instead. While they do not contain anything secret or damaging, it is not something that you want to have in the hands of a media outlet looking to create a story where they can - so due diligence is always the practice when it comes to these documents - hence my original point of the "leaker" being held accountable, making them relatively hard to come by and "more than their job is worth" than to leak.
  3. Then you obviously know something I don't.. Or the other way around. Either way, that statement is incorrect.
  4. Any-one willing to leak you the official ride document would be in serious breach surmounting to Gross Misconduct; I'd be surprised if any-one will reach out to you with it or if they even have it on their person as in some cases / rides / parks / sessions they are signed out and in again within a classroom setting..
  5. They'll release provisional seasonal hours in advance so that guests can start to plan trips early. It's the same principle as holiday companies advertising next year's Summer holidays in September the previous year. The OPERATIONAL budget for 2020 will be provisionally in place, but won't be confirmed until into the new year - particularly as the season doesn't start until March, there is no need for it to be confirmed before then. This gives them an extra few months to finalise their hours, their staffing levels, analyse last years' trends etc. The financial year may even run April to March, so the budgets won't be confirmed until the new Tax Year anyway. I also think (but haven't done the analysis myself) that the hours "saved" at Fright Nights are actually being used to open on days that were closed in previous years.. Essentially and very loosely speaking, the park has a number of "operating hours" to use in a year (which would be fully costed for staff, operations, stock etc) and they will allocate these according to trend and cost analysis. So, for example, they will have 5,000 hours (it isn't 5,000, this is just an example) to use between 1 Jan to Dec 31. They get to choose exactly when they are open between those dates. So, if they wanted to spend 30 hours opening in Half Term, they can. But they have to be confident that they will be profitable and warrant spending them 30 hours that could have been used opening for 3 days mid-week mid-season instead. For that reason, they will release provisional dates early, to gauge whether they have the offering correct and then re-allocate / shift around based on reaction. Remember Alton and their 10 / 11 / miday staggered ride openings? Same principle.
  6. Every year at this time we have this same conversation "oh my god, they're cutting back on hours, the scrounging, money grabbing people..." and so on.. or words to that effect. And every year, around Feb, the hours are updated. It is likely that the Summer ones are just budget place-holders and will be finalised in March when further details are known about the 2020 budget / expectations. So, my take-away advice on this is to not take these at face value as the final operating hours as they have changed every year up until now and I don't see how 2020 will be any different. Remember - 10pm closes throughout the summer in 2019 weren't truly known until close to the season kick-off (more were added)
  7. New for 2020 confirmed..... Car Parking Simulator... *upcharge attraction
  8. daboywunda

    2019 Season

    Technically not. It just allows the Park to pursue one if they want to - but unless they caused any actual damage pushing for a conviction is hard, costly and potentially pointless.
  9. daboywunda

    2019 Season

    Yep. The crime would be committed by follow-up acts such as breaking into buildings, damage caused by their trespass (broken fences from climbing etc)...
  10. My 2020 realistic wishlist? It's tough to know what to suggest and keep realistic knowing that Merlin are investing else-where in the portfolio, other parks are seeing increased investment over Thorpe, Alton would be due their next SW within 3 years and so a new Thorpe coaster wouldn't want to compete, the taking over of Merlin by Lego (they need time to settle into a direction) etc. A newly published Mid Term Development Plan that updates the previous, now expired one. Given the new Head Of Thorpe being there a year, she will probably have a direction now. Build on Fright Nights "Island Changes After Dark" - Have the park operating as a normal park during the day, then as the sun sets rides start changing their music, lights change colour, smoke machines kick off, mazes open, actors roam the park etc. Give it that true "changes after dark" eerie feeling. Almost like the park is taken over by the witching hour.. Some sort of development towards a new coaster... Trouble is, Canada Creek / Loggers seems to be the logical site but Creek Freak Massacre and Platform 15 are so popular, would they want to milk another year our of them - or develop the area? Tricky one that... There are plenty of places to develop though: Swarm Island needs connecting up to Stealth.. So... Continue the strength of the events that have been seen this summer. Bouncezilla was fun, offensive to the eyes and popular with the public. In the absence of anything major next year, doing something with the Saw Alive / Thorpe Belle boat as a new attraction would be good. Return to fireworks to mark the end of season. Late openings over the summer are great, but they just don't work without a decent purpose - Even some Fright Nights struggled this year.. A new event called Ride-And-Seek. no idea what it would be about... but I just liked the pun... In terms of more unrealistic but possible: New, decent flat some-where (no, not a top spin) Complete top-to-toe, end-to-end repaint, repair, refresh of everything on park - buildings, rides, coasters, effects, paths re-laid and unified etc. Literally strip the park down to bare bones and build it up again, fresh and new. The long-awaited Entrance and Car Park upgrades. They need more parking barriers, better parking ticket system, better traffic flow, more concrete parking, better drop-off / pick-up / coach facilities etc. Maybe even a second gate or 2 outside the park to make Thorpe year-round (Sea-Life, Little BIG, restaurant, new brand etc). Work on the new hotel over the lake finally starting. In terms of no-way unrealistic: Time to start the process of owning "Six Flags Identity" and competing with Energylandia style aggressive expansion: Corner off the whole of Old Town / Slammer for the 2021 coaster and area overhaul Also Begin construction on new coaster behind Swam for 2022 Start preparation for the removal of Thorpe Shark and it's "entrance hugging" coaster that will replace it.
  11. Shotgun a Topspin... and the Ramses Revenge relocation rumour. BANNED AND BLOCKED.
  12. daboywunda

    2019 Season

    Interesting that you say this.. I've just run it past a criminal defence barrister I know who's exact response was "this is textbook trespass". To do with terms and conditions of entry being that you are only allowed on site as a paying guest during "permissible trading hours". Once the final ride has been closed down, guests are required to vacate the park and the Tresspass Injunction kicks in. So, technically this IS a criminal act, the police just couldn't be bothered, for whatever reason, to follow it through. Difference being that they cannot be charged and convicted retrospectively. So, they will now profit from the video having broken the law. EDIT: That said, Tresspass isn't criminal.. it is civil.. so the Police weren't required to act on it any-way. But then, that also explains why the area is typically quite rife with "petty lawlessness", but that's a different topic of conversation.
  13. daboywunda

    2019 Season

    I{t must be close to or just above "theoretical" capacity today (The park operates 2 tiers because of the size and layout: Theoretical Capacity: The point that the park starts to become uncomfortable to be in) and Absolute Capacity: Max number of people allowed on park from an H&S point of view. I say close to because if Colossus and NI were open, the 120 min queues would most likely be 90ish...
  14. daboywunda

    2019 Season

    I think overall this season has been a good one. It has probably performed in line with expectations given the low investment year and guest satisfaction seems to be up. Fright Nights was always going to be a sticky one for attendance this year because of the 2 half terms of London / Surrey being different weeks; so unlike previous years where every-one visits in the same 1 week, this year is spread over 2 weeks. I think that the package of Fright Nights could be better - wish there was more obvious "The island changes after dark" other than a few mazes that open and a flash-mob dance, such as ride music being normal in daylight and changing at night, actors in public areas, light colour changes, more decoration etc but it is what it is. They tried by adding smoke machines which work well when it isn't windy. I've visited pretty much every Saturday since the season started thanks to my annual pass and season fastrack pass. It does seem that ride availability has been generally excellent and presentation of the park is better than it has been in years (mist on Nemesis Inferno, smoke on Stealth, effects on Saw, skimmers and fire (albeit intermittent) on Swarm etc). Bouncezilla seemed to do what it needed to do - provided a filler for now and seemed popular with the GP - Not a crowd pleasing, attendance increasing attraction; but decent enough "for now". It seems that the flat rides are now suffering seasonal fatigue and are limping home... Something that should be considered given the lack of interest in flat rides over the parks in general. A few questions come of this though - Are we about to get a flurry of new coasters to replace these like Alton seem to be doing or will the park just be left to fall into ruin. The park almost need to admit to and own their "we want to be a British Six Flags" park rather than trying to masquerade as a theme park. If they do, they can throw a tonne of hardware at the park and own their new image. Consider an RMC hybrid or (high capacity) Raptor, Mack or Intamin launcher, a decent airtime machine that hugs the entrance etc. But that is just a fanboy wish list. Works for Cedar Point...
  15. daboywunda

    2019 Season

    It seems that Rush is also limping home too. Was operating on 1 arm with a 60 min queue on Friday evening - and was the only "decent" attraction open thanks to the wind closing everything else. A poor end to an other-wise pretty decent season.
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