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Yeah, I heard about this a while ago.

 

in brief they're getting two new coasters, enclosure upgrades, more accommodation and numerous other attractions.

 

There will be a new Juvelin and/or Flying Dutchman style coaster/s opening in the next 5-10 years if plans happen. One will go on the grass whilst the other would remove the attractions listed above (one of which is getting removed/replaced next year. 

 

No real loss if these plans actually happen as a new coaster would be a much welcomed addition (especially for Chessington).

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5 hours ago, Mattgwise said:

It's part of the development plan that was put in earlier this year. It looks like you've commented on it above. Anyway the official document from the Chessington site.

 

Unless you're solely referring to the gruffallo bit at the bottom in which case time will tell.

 

https://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=https://www.chessington.com/downloads/plan/local-residents/future-development-display-boards-2016.pdf&ved=0ahUKEwichrv34srOAhWoDcAKHbLtDSEQFggaMAA&usg=AFQjCNHjK8-tThRkIS0Gf_nM17hGHh1ZQQ

Yes, that and the bit about the removed rides. They were never confirmed where they?

 

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1 hour ago, ChessingtonSam said:

Yes, that and the bit about the removed rides. They were never confirmed where they?

 

Check page 7 of the document to show the redeveloped areas. Those who went to the open days were told those areas would likely have the rides removed.

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On 25 April 2016 at 8:47 PM, ChessingtonSam said:

Exactly, but the thing is people will never be happy. Beg for a coaster for years, we get one, we moan because that's all we get. Pathetic, I for one have set my expectations high but not too high. I have no doubt that we'll get a well themed and thrilling family coaster, but I'm not expecting a big manufacturer or anything.

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You've just hit the nail right on the head here - the GP have been waiting for a new major investment for "years" now and it's all very well and good planning a new rollercoaster for 5-10 years time but it's something which should have happened "years" ago . Not to mention, the 'new ride' for 2016 fell through so what's to say history doesn't repeat itself and  these plans never happen as they aren't set in stone whatsoever. Even if these plans were successful and a new rollercoaster did arrive in 5-10 years time, the rest of the park will be rotting even more and a new rollercoaster won't cover up the fact that the rest of the park is on its last dying legs. Unfortunately for chessington they have made too many mistakes in the past(investing their money in more accommodation instead of actually fixing up the park etc) and are about to make another potentially drastic mistake in the future by scrapping bubbleworks, one of the parks most beloved rides and potentially replacing it with something which could be terrible(equally it could be an improvement but only time will tell on this). Chessington have made too many mistakes and the park is falling apart so I look forward to seeing paultons beccoming the 'new chessington' as it continues to expand and improve.

 

14 hours ago, ChessingtonSam said:

From Wikipedia, so of course, possibly (probably) false

 

Bubbleworks is set to close on September 6, 2016 with the Factory "coming under new management" for March 2017. The ride system will remain, but the ride will receive a full re-theme to the children's storybook The Gruffalo."

 

 

If this happens and it's a disaster;

 

1. It will be the most hilarious mistake of merlins career

2. Customer satisfaction levels will drop so dramatically ; people are already upset that bubbleworks is being removed and think the whole ride system is being replaced so if they visit to find the same ride system with a hideous retheme then people are going to be really peed off.

 

Even if it's not a disaster it would still be a massive mistake as bubbleworks catered to the whole family market, ranging from young kids to teenagers and adults whereas theming it as the grufalo means most likely only little kids will be able to enjoy it ruining the target market of bubbleworks making there one less ride in the park which older guests are able to enjoy .

Edited by TPJames
I keep thinking its 2015 not 2016 for some reason- how time flies!
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16 hours ago, TPJames said:

Even if it's not a disaster it would still be a massive mistake as bubbleworks catered to the whole family market, ranging from young kids to teenagers and adults whereas theming it as the grufalo means most likely only little kids will be able to enjoy it ruining the target market of bubbleworks making there one less ride in the park which older guests are able to enjoy .

That is a very good point, even in its current form Bubbleworks appeals to everyone, and it still gets long queues despite a good throughput which has to be an indicator that people still like it.

 

With some money spent on it, Bubbleworks could have easily been a very good dark ride again, they could have given it a retheme (not back to Professor Burp, but a new, original idea to go with the existing ride), restored the scenes back to their former glory (more colourful and better lighting) and it would have been a runaway success.  Instead, they go for the easy option of slapping an IP onto it and thinking "it'll do for a few years."  I mean does The Gruffalo really appeal to a wide range of people in the same way that Bubbleworks still does?  What a shame.

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I'd like to borrow one of your time machines please. I know at some point, Merlin might build something that people will like and I'd prefer the positivity over the constant pessimism. Right now even the thought of something drives people crazy and they've already designated it to the dustbin. 

 

The Gruffalo doesn't exactly send me running to the turnstiles but as far as I can tell, Chessingtons target audience hasn't changed and the Gruffalo is within the remit of younger families.

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Just because its within their target audience does not mean its the right choice. By that logic you could justify anything the park do - 

 

"Pandamonium doesn't interest me, but the children will love it probably" doesn't cover the fact its the worst, most forgettable investment ever. 

 

The Gruffalo Storybook Adventure is a completely backwards decision, and totally highlights how sorry of a state the UK theme park industry is in right now. The fact that without a moments hesitation (don't let their social media game fool you, the park are glad to see the back of Bubbleworks) they go and replace what was once their most iconic, most cherished, and most popular ride with a cheap and dated IP

 

Of course, the Bubbleworks as it stands is a disaster of a ride, but as its popularity shows, its a concept that still has potential. If they'd been in even the slightest way creative, they could have tried to actually "sell the factory" to a zany new character, producing anything else that could possibly link to the word 'Bubbleworks'; instead however, it literally came down to different people in the park's PR Department (so people with no creative background whatsoever) arguing over which IP to use. Yes, which IP to use. Hotel Transylvania was once considered for example. Point being, they don't want to hear it unless its the latest trend.

 

So yes, there are plenty of things that suit the 'target market' of Chessington, The Gruffalo being one of them. But that does not, for once instant, mean it is the right decision.

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33 minutes ago, HermanTheGerman said:

 

 

Of course, the Bubbleworks as it stands is a disaster of a ride, but as its popularity shows, its a concept that still has potential. If they'd been in even the slightest way creative, they could have tried to actually "sell the factory" to a zany new character, producing anything else that could possibly link to the word 'Bubbleworks'; instead however, it literally came down to different people in the park's PR Department (so people with no creative background whatsoever) arguing over which IP to use. Yes, which IP to use. Hotel Transylvania was once considered for example. Point being, they don't want to hear it unless its the latest trend.

That really is saddening to read, for a park that once strived to come up with their own ideas for the rides, now arguing over which IP?!

Why can't they use their own creativity to come up with something?

 

I really can't see why they haven't looked to improve Bubbleworks as anyone can see that it's still very popular, and the idea is timeless (as opposed to IP's which can expire very quickly). The fact that it still gets long queues 26 years after opening, despite having a high throughput, says that IMO the park have at least the basics of a timeless dark ride and that it's worth keeping.

 

They had the fundamentals of a very good dark ride in Bubbleworks; the soundtrack is excellent, the scenes would be great with some changes, more colour & better lighting and the finale would be outstanding if they actually put some thought into it rather than a black wall, cheap LED's on factory settings and a ride boat dumped on its own - I mean for a final scene with so much potential it's disgusting that it was left in such a poor state. It had potential to be an outstanding ride again with some thought put into it, IMO it's such a shame that they seem intent on slapping poorly thought-out IP's on the park rather than creating attractions that will continue to be popular for years.

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6 hours ago, HermanTheGerman said:

Just because its within their target audience does not mean its the right choice. By that logic you could justify anything the park do - 

 

"Pandamonium doesn't interest me, but the children will love it probably" doesn't cover the fact its the worst, most forgettable investment ever. 

 

Are you only using hyperbole for your post or do you genuinely believe the Gruffalo is the worst investment ever? 

(Edit to Add:- Genuinely thought you were talking about Pandemonium at Drayton Manor here. Then I read JoshC's trip report and got what you meant)

6 hours ago, Coaster Jamie said:

That really is saddening to read, for a park that once strived to come up with their own ideas for the rides, now arguing over which IP?!

Why can't they use their own creativity to come up with something?

 

I really can't see why they haven't looked to improve Bubbleworks as anyone can see that it's still very popular, and the idea is timeless (as opposed to IP's which can expire very quickly). The fact that it still gets long queues 26 years after opening, despite having a high throughput, says that IMO the park have at least the basics of a timeless dark ride and that it's worth keeping.

 

They had the fundamentals of a very good dark ride in Bubbleworks; the soundtrack is excellent, the scenes would be great with some changes, more colour & better lighting and the finale would be outstanding if they actually put some thought into it rather than a black wall, cheap LED's on factory settings and a ride boat dumped on its own - I mean for a final scene with so much potential it's disgusting that it was left in such a poor state. It had potential to be an outstanding ride again with some thought put into it, IMO it's such a shame that they seem intent on slapping poorly thought-out IP's on the park rather than creating attractions that will continue to be popular for years.

 

1) They tried to improve Bubbleworks in 2006, thats how we got this mess of a ride the first time.

2) It's throughput isn't as high as you think it is. It's only in the 400/500 bracket. 

3) The basic dark ride will remain whatever the ride becomes. The current Bubbleworks is tired, messy and boring.

4) The public seem to like IP's. Look at the success of Saw, Peppa-Pig Land, Nickeldoeon Land, Thomas the Tank Engine Land, Cbeebies Land and you can see the reason why Chessington are being 'lazy' and arguing over the USP. I'm not defending that for a second but clearly there is a brain drain at Chessington in particular and they have no intent to be original anymore.

 

This is why I gave up being a Chessington fan years ago. Gone are the days of Rodeo, Samurai, Professor Burps Bubbleworks, long loved days where the park genuinely cared about experiences. Now its all about the quick return and as you can see with attendance figures that continue to grow, the public love it. I don't which is why I haven't been for two and a half years.

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4 hours ago, Mark9 said:

1) They tried to improve Bubbleworks in 2006, thats how we got this mess of a ride the first time.

They didn't try to improve Bubbleworks, the sponsorship only came about because the ride's structure needed significant work following rot, and DIC point blank refused to pay for it.

 

The actual "improvements" to the ride were done by Tussauds Studios with an interest level of 0.2 out of 10, who just botched up the lighting, botched up the audio (remember the didn't want to pay for a new soundtrack, so just badly chopped up the pieces they had already), and went over each scene, covering the walls with boring wallpaper, and making the vast majority of the animations static. Nobody can honestly put their hand on their heart and say they thought they were 'improving it' when they went over all the station murals and hand painted signs with flat singular colours and computer printed signs.

 

You've the foundations of a brilliant attraction with Bubbleworks. If they really put their minds to it, I'm sure they could create something charming and timeless again. But hey, latest trends and Gruffalos sound just as exciting. (no)

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5 minutes ago, pluk said:

Gruffalo isn't even the latest trend, it's already in decline. The tots have moved on and it's all about the stickman now. They're about 5 years too late to jump on the Gruffalo bandwagon.

To be honest, Hotel Transylvania would be far more in 'trend' than the grufalo is, and would fit in with Chessington's Transylvania themed land(vaguely).

 

Not that I think that would be a better idea though, both ideas are absolutely appalling. 

 

 

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On 19 August 2016 at 3:28 PM, Mark9 said:

 I know at some point, Merlin might build something that people will like and I'd prefer the positivity over the constant pessimism. Right now even the thought of something drives people crazy and they've already designated it to the dustbin. 

 

I know your sentiments are good but to be honest Merlin deserve the criticism they get, and they still won't have the ears to listen or see it necessary to change their deliberate dumbing down of UK theme park attractions and genericism. I know there are unfortunately many needlessly sarcastic and uninformed people who moan about Merlin over this that and the other, but there is a genuine unease with merlin in the industry as well. It raises a very interesting point.

 

When it comes to theme parks, Merlin has a very corporate restricted system for building new projects, they could choose to do something truly amazing and lasting if that was their priority, instead they systematically make contrived decisions based purely on how they think profit can be maximised. Budgets for actual design and concepts are hugely restrained deliberately. On a project, nothing is allowed to be spent until it is justified in terms of direct returns. No creative cultivation at all, despite the huge opportunities and resources in the rest of the theme park industry to do so. Attitudes & policies within the company towards design and entertainment are also very disagreeable, and there is a lot that could be said about this, but it's not appropriate here.

 

Merlin, as with most corporate giants, stifle the design & entertainments industry in the UK with their style of work, self-centred practices and their mistakes in project design. But they have the money and that's what they flaunt really, spending more to give the impression they are the best than to actually create the best. To be frank, as a theme park fan, visiting for nostalgia's sake is a mute point because any non-Merlin rides are quite deliberately left to die until they can be recycled into one of their own (see the entire last 15 years of the BubbleWorks); similarly visiting the old parks in the hope that one day a classic attraction will be made will waste years of time - when you could be enjoying genuinly brilliant European independent parks that do it yearly instead (for much less ticket price). On the other hand if those people who do genuinely enjoy Merlin's brand of stingy genericism then there is nothing wrong with enjoying it, and feel free to keep visiting, just I feel most people don't see what could really be achieved with theme parks outside of Merlin. Or even outside Disney and Universal, who do continue to produce high quality attractions out of but not nearly to the level of creative integrity they used to, and are even more corporatised internally.

 

Speaking generally, Chessington is run as "the African themed one" in merlin's resort theme parks box of chocolates, and its future development has already been planned for the next decade or so- its heritage and the good old days don't even come into it. If Merlin's current style is what you like then that's what you'll get, if not you'll be much happier with your memories of when it was a park with actual craft and character, and not visit anymore. Creative entertainment has long since vacated the park.

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  • 4 years later...

Very exciting times, and most unexpected with the current climate. Very surprised to see this in all honesty as expected investments to be on hold.

 

For more details on this, here is a leaflet which outlines more. And a link to the booking page for the live video events (booking opens 4th May)...

 

https://www.chessington.com/our-company/local-residents/

 

May be a cartoon of text that says "significantly impacted There steep and Resort continuing the firsta for openedi continues CALSINCTON ROAR SOME NEWS! and EXCITING PLANS FOR NEW ROLLERCOASTER AND CHILDREN'S RIDES AT CHESSINGTON WORLD OF ADVENTURES RESORT plans. answer ONLINE PUBLIC CONSULTATION EVENT HEAR OUR PLANS AND SHARE YOUR VIEWS number presented master hessington World guidelines, range exciting new Resort. element southern part Safari 17, Resort. Please received proposals two-week level area highlighted support from those about attended This planning emerging and comments pandemic has very meant recent Monday May forward exciting details timings can founda other leisure events additional Thank Chessington World Adventures Resort"

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It's funny looking back over this thread and seeing the luke-warm response to rumours about the (then strongly rumoured) Gruffalo retheme of Bubbleworks. And it ended up being a pretty decent retheme, which seems to have captured the attention of a wide audience. It's not the best thing ever, but I think you'd have to argue pretty obtusely to say it's been a bad investment for the park.

 

 

Anyways, news of this. It's good to hear that this idea is still alive and kicking in some sense. I think we'd be kidding ourselves if we said this had been in the works for a long time, as it certainly feels like this idea was shelved at one point, and has now been brought back to attention. I do wonder how much Paulton's continued success is affecting Chessington's plans, but in any case, if the park build a new coaster, that's only a good thing in my books.

 

I'm still cautious with the optimism that it will happen. The previous consultation was 5 years ago now, and many things will have changed. As I say, I very much feel like the idea was shelved at one point, changed at another. I imagine the ideas from the concepts in 2016 will be much changed too, if they even were a true reflection on what was genuinely being considered.

 

 

Going on face value of 'What would I like if Chessington get a new coaster', my answer would be 'Pretty much any family thrill coaster'. There's an abundance of coaster choices out there which would suit the park...

-Family launch coaster (either like Juvelen, or a more standard sit down experience)

-Mack water coaster

-Wood

-Vekoma mine train

-Even any coaster with a single inversion for a 'My first loop the loop' type experience would be cool

 

Not fussed on theme or IP really. The right IP can do wonders for any park, as we've seen. I do think Chessington's zoo-park intertwining means they realise the importance of in-house stuff though. 

 

I wouldn't expect to see it any time soon though... 2024/5 feels most likely at the moment. 

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Chessingtons intentions of adding another coaster is excellent and welcoming news. Here’s hoping it goes ahead.

 

The addition is definitely critical at this park now as it’s ageing headliners are starting to struggle with reliability and also they are falling behind the awesome Paultons Park in many ways. So they must compete. 
 

Something like Pegasus Express at Parc Asterix, De Vlieglande Hollander at Efteling or even a small wooden coaster would be appropriate  additions IMO. Also something with a throughput of 1000+ PPH would be much welcomed, given how of leading rides are lucky to reach half of that. Let alone surpass. 

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This is great news for the park if it gets the go ahead. I can’t believe how long it has been since Chessington actually got a new rollercoaster so this investment is well earned! 
 

It’s the ideal location as well, it’s nice having the green area but really it is a bit of a waste of space so I’m looking forward to it having a better use. 
 

 

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