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About Coaster

  • Birthday February 17

Previous Fields

  • Favourite ride
    Magnum XL 200
  • Favourite Theme Park
    Cedar Point

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  • Interests
    Music, playing the trombone, computers, golf, theme parks.

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  1. I found it disappointing that the queueline marshals were left to announce to everyone that the ride wouldn't open. Why weren't management in attendance? It felt really poor for them to hide away and let their front-line staff take so much abuse and shouting from guests; it wasn't nice.
  2. Don't worry, I'm not back, just briefly returning to the forum to highlight what I feel is a very important talking point. In a recent government report, Merlin Entertainments have been listed as a company who have not paid minimum wage. The company failed to pay minimum to 1,100 employees, equating to £43,000. Source: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/over-500-companies-named-for-not-paying-minimum-wage Ride Rater have published a further breakdown of all the available info: https://riderater.co.uk/11561/merlin-entertainments-failed-to-pay-minimum-wage/ Flamingo Land are also named here for failing to pay 4 workers the minimum, following a previous report from Blackpool Pleasure Beach who had failed to pay 12 workers the minimum. In 2018, the CEO of Merlin Entertainments took home a salary of £1,493,000. In contrast, the £43,000 owed to 1,100 employees would have still left £1,450,000 for the CEO. Staff rely on being paid at least the legal minimum to live off, to pay their bills. It's shameful that this has been allowed to happen. Source: https://www.erieri.com/executive/salary/nick-varney-8ydw I feel that as enthusiasts/people with an interest in theme parks, we have to pay attention to this and demand better for the staff who make our hobby possible.
  3. 1966; the Doctor Who villain 'The Toymaker' dates back to a William Hartnell episode. Filming for the 60th anniversary (where the same character is being brought back, 'reimagined') took place in May and June 2022. Pictures from the filming were available in the public domain (many were posted to Twitter, YouTube etc) including photos of the shop facade and a sign inside the shop stating "Toymaker of the year".
  4. Thorpe Park's new maze for 2023 has seemingly taken some inspiration from the 60th anniversary of Doctor Who. The similarities are as follows: 1. Both 'villains' are called The Toymaker 2. Both operate out of a similar-looking toy emporium Whilst the DW 60th anniversary has not aired yet, The Toymaker as a character originated in the 60s, and filming took place for the 60th anniversary special back in May/June last year; meaning that the DW story was likely written and planned well ahead of Thorpe Park. Interested to hear theories on this. Has it taken inspiration, or purely a coincidence?
  5. There is a new promo image for Valhalla in the Visit Blackpool 2023 guide. In the politest way possible, I don't know what to make of this. 😂 Guide: https://www.visitblackpool.com/latest-news/destination-guide-2023-is-here/
  6. Opening weekend at PB has varied over the years, on a good year you're looking at decent ride availability but probably a lot of one train ops. It's worth keeping an eye on their planned maintenance page in the weeks soon before opening to get an idea of ride availability: https://www.blackpoolpleasurebeach.com/planned-maintenance/
  7. Big One stalled today with guests on, due to high winds. Curiously, this happened on the new section of track.
  8. Coaster

    Wicker Man

    That is incredibly poor. Wicker Man opened in 2018, if it still doesn't have permanent lighting then that is an absolute joke frankly. Why should guests miss out because Alton can't sort out very basic things? It's just not good enough, especially for a park of their scale.
  9. Coaster

    Wicker Man

    Wicker Man was reportedly on one train this weekend with the queue peaking at 150 minutes. Ouch.
  10. In my eyes, Enso is an indicator that gives more believability to the consensus that Icon was not the roaring success that an investment of over £16 million should have been. It feels like a quick short-term way of re-marketing the ride, which is an idea that I already don’t like, but the real problems with this come from the logistics and upcharge. I just don’t think it’s reasonable to expect guests to pay an additional £15 for this. A peak day ticket for PB costs £44 online, £46 at the gate, adding another £15 on equates to around £60 for a day at Pleasure Beach. That’s before you even look at the £25 option! Logistically I feel like it’ll be a complete nightmare. Icon’s operations were unbearably slow in 2021, and that was just with the addition of seatbelts. The station isn’t built well for Speedy Pass, let alone having a mix of Enso and Speedy Pass riders going in (presumably) the same way, waving their phones at staff who are trying to run the ride safely and efficiently. I just can’t envisage a way in which this won’t impact on operations of the ride – and that’s terrible. An upcharge experience should not wreck the customer service for everyone else, nor should it provide a bad experience for those paying for it, but unless BPB have something up their sleeve, I cannot see any other way than Icon having its operations well and truly wrecked. I am not onboard with the feeling that it was “inevitable” that it was going to be a high upcharge because of the logistics. To me, the logistics of only having 2 seats, a very low throughput, are all ‘Pleasure Beach’ issues. Why should guests pay more because the park has essentially implemented something really badly? There is also the factor of the larger seats in the back row – how will Enso affect this? It’ll be hard for the staff to communicate with so many people, “sorry you have to wait, this is an Enso train, sorry you can’t go on yet, this is a standard train, etc. etc.” What if the Enso train needs taking out of service for any reason, but there are guests who have paid turning up at their slot to ride it? It just brings so many potential problems with it and in a year where the focus should be on Valhalla, it feels like a last-ditch attempt. It doesn’t give me faith in other things to be honest, if they’re having to fall back on this.
  11. I've spotted that BPB have updated their booking site to list that The Big One will still be unavailable on the following dates; Sat 12th - Sun 13th March Sat 19th - Sun 20th March Probably linked to this.. ahem... issue. It was only Grand National showing for these dates up until yesterday, so looks like (another) delay. On the plus side, I'm saving a lot of petrol so far this season!
  12. Latest on Valhalla Promo video; New theming items/plans from https://www.facebook.com/blackpoolpleasurebeach I'm intrigued as to what the plan in that last picture is for!
  13. Yuck! Why do they throw money away on that thing when they barely have enough to open their own rides? 🤨
  14. New promotional picture. Still no re-opening date, "summer 2022" is the official line at the moment.
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