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Thorpe Park: What could the future hold?

holtjammy16

New Member
Is everyone forgetting the park recently spent a huge budget on DBGT, which completely backfired as a long term investment. The daily maintenance alone takes half a day to complete. In hindsight, the money should have been spent on a coaster. Yes the short term investments are terrible, (Going from an extreme horror maze in the summer last year to a giant bouncy castle this year) However, they did try to build a high budget attraction after the Swarm.
was the 'huge' 30m budget ever proved more than a rumor though ?
 

08newmanb

New Member
As for Knightmare, I'd take it all down and scrap it. I'd choose Vekoma to build an identical layout, but with an upside down overbanked curve, and a zero g roll. Also with the mountain theming, with a new gothic soundtrack. A Vekoma BMRX (Custom) layout like no other.
 

Ethan

Well-Known Member
As for Knightmare, I'd take it all down and scrap it. I'd choose Vekoma to build an identical layout, but with an upside down overbanked curve, and a zero g roll. Also with the mountain theming, with a new gothic soundtrack. A Vekoma BMRX (Custom) layout like no other.
I am aware of your passion for Knightmare, but it's never going to Thorpe Park. Or any park. It's scrap metal at this point.

I don't see Thorpe getting a new coaster for a few more years, but I'd love to be proved wrong on that. The funds just aren't being given to the park by the sounds of it, but perhaps Lego might change this.
 

Heth

New Member
But why do that when they could do something completely new? I doubt a new adaptation of an old ride is going to bring in crowds. It just won't.

Even ignoring the marketability, I just don't actually like the idea to be honest.

In an ideal world I'd like a GCI wooden coaster. Wicker Man has proved popular, it's a ride type not present in Thorpe Park and it provides an entry level thrill coaster which is a good mid point between Flying Fish and the bigger coasters.

More realistically I don't actually think Thorpe will add anything big for years...sadly.
 

bob_3_

Active Member
More realistically I don't actually think Thorpe will add anything big for years...sadly.
Urgh although I kinda feel this way too... that's depressing. We're looking at at least 8 years without a major coaster and thats if we start seeing movement now. Saying hat you don't expect anything in the coming years suggests we're gonna go over 10 years possibly, thats so sad. I pray we're wrong.
 

spicy

Active Member
Is a pretty sorry state of affairs for anything new coming to TP at the moment it seems.

The first coaster I ever followed construction of was Nemesis Inferno and it was so exciting thinking of what would come next and following construction of Stealth/Saw/Swarm and attending opening day knowing the next coaster was only around the corner.

Seems we have hit a wall since Swarm and the awful DBGT.

I hope whatever it is we get in 2022 or beyond it is worth the long wait.
 

Pokemaniac

Mountain monkey
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
The interesting question to me is whether the addition of a new coaster will coincide with the removal of an old one. Given stable visitor numbers, any park will eventually come to a point where it doesn't make sense to increase the number of coasters in operation. In other words, a park can't keep growing forever. At some point, focus will shift towards sustaining and periodically renewing its lineup rather than expanding it. If the Thorpe executives feel that the park has reached this point, a new addition won't come until something old needs to be removed, and we can assume the renewal will be like-for-like. If they tear out Flying Fish, they're not going to get a B&M Giga to replace it.

None of Thorpe's major coasters in operation today are particularly old, all things considered. The Walking Dead is actually the oldest one, originally opening in 1996. That's just 23 years ago, and we can assume they expect it to last for a while longer since they just refurbished it. Colossus in second place (2002) is still not old enough to vote. True, it rides like a plastic lawnchair caught in a landslide, but its vital components may be rated for a lifetime of 25 years or more, and it might still pull in enough guests to warrant a life extension beyond that. None of the major flat rides appear to be older than 20 years either, they may yet have many years left in them.

In a sense, I can see why Thorpe has slowed down investments in recent years. It has a "complete" lineup, more or less, it has reached a size that fits its visitor numbers, and all the major attractions have several years left in their life spans. Minor additions, seasonal events and promotions could be enough to sustain the visitor numbers without building anything major over the next few years. The boom period of the early 2000s provided the park with enough rides to rely on for the foreseeable future. To go into a full cynical corporate perspective: Fans who grew up during this time might actually have become too used to this cadence of multiple large additions every year. While they see this current situation, where new additions are few and far between, as an exception; actually, the boom period was the anomaly. What we're seeing now is business as usual.


That being said: Thorpe built a lot of big rides between 2000 and 2006: Tidal Wave, Detonator, Vortex, Zodiac, Colossus, Nemesis Inferno, Quantum, Samurai, Rush and Stealth. That's literally half of its backbone lineup built within seven years. Assuming a similar operating life for most of these rides, they will also reach their functional life span in very short order too. If the Thorpe executives don't plan to do any replacements before they are needed, when that time comes, they will have to replace half the park in under a decade. The longer they choose to kick that can down the road, the harsher they will have it when a large fraction of their headliner attractions go out of order shortly after another. The investment of replacing these needs to be spread out over a longer time period, and the earlier they start, the smoother it will go.

Take the ten rides above as an example. Say that half of them can have their lifetime extended by up to eight years at the most. Say also that the other half can be replaced earlier than their life span would suggest, by up to five years. Suddenly, that 7-year period in which they reach their life span is stretched to 20 years. That's one ride to be replaced every two years. But if they let every ride run their full life span and put them all on life extension, they will not extend the replacement period at all. They'd be back to having to buy ten new rides within seven years to sustain the park's size. And those are headliner attractions, mind you. Ones that can't be functionally replaced by inflatable castles or merry-go-rounds. Even though it would cost a lot to buy each of these rides brand new, probably putting red numbers on the bottom line the year in question, anything worse than a like-for-like replacement would hurt the park and cost them attendance. The bottom line is affected either way, they will have to pick their poison. Red numbers every few years for a while, or green numbers until they suddenly go red forever. Spreading the investment would be easier on the bank, so they better get started already. Some of the rides might still have good resale value, so the net cost of replacing them could be lowered somewhat.


If I were to manage the replacement, I think a logical place to begin would be to do as Liseberg and replace Vortex with a bigger and more modern Frisbee. This giant flat ride would serve as a headliner to soften the blow of Colossus being torn down at the same time, leaving the park with one fewer coaster while a replacement is built. The Colossus replacement could be the Big New Thing for a few years (like Swarm was/currently is, depending on your opinion on DBGT) while the rest of the flat rides were replaced almost like-for-like. Nemesis Inferno could have its life extended for a few more years, it's still solid enough to be up to par with modern rides. A few years after the replacement of Colossus, Tidal Wave would be taken down and replaced (possibly with a Log Flume). Some of these replacements, most prominently the Frisbee, would be put on the island behind Stealth, finally tying those two loose ends together. The hole left by Tidal Wave would also clear up land in preparation for the day Stealth kicks the bucket. It would be the next on the list, approaching 25 years of age by this point. I'd also look into building a waterpark as a second gate at some point, removing Amity Beach and refurbishing the entrance area so the first thing greeting visitors to Thorpe wouldn't be the backside of a waterslide.

To conclude, I don't think Thorpe Park strictly needs any big new rides right at the moment. But it sure as heck will need several of them in the near-ish future, and it would be stupid to wait until that time comes before anything is done. My biggest worry is the possibility that they will go for the "we'll deal with that as it comes" solution, simply because it puts nice numbers on the bottom line until it suddenly doesn't anymore.
 

spicy

Active Member
To conclude, I don't think Thorpe Park strictly needs any big new rides right at the moment. But it sure as heck will need several of them in the near-ish future, and it would be stupid to wait until that time comes before anything is done. My biggest worry is the possibility that they will go for the "we'll deal with that as it comes" solution, simply because it puts nice numbers on the bottom line until it suddenly doesn't anymore.
Great post and you raise a great point.

I bet you probably put more thought about the lifetime of those attractions in your post than Tussaud’s did back in the early 2000’s when they published the MTDP and stated that they were to add Colossus, Nemesis Inferno, Stealth all in such a small time frame.

The shareholders were looking for a quick return and couldn’t care less about the park in 25 - 35 years time.

And again I guess Blackstone didn’t really think that far forward either as they have now sold the majority of their shareholding to Kirkbi, so it will be upto Kirkbi to pick up the pieces at some point from those initial quick investments years ago, assuming they are in it for the long haul..
 

DelPiero

Well-Known Member
But why do that when they could do something completely new? I doubt a new adaptation of an old ride is going to bring in crowds. It just won't.

Even ignoring the marketability, I just don't actually like the idea to be honest.

In an ideal world I'd like a GCI wooden coaster. Wicker Man has proved popular, it's a ride type not present in Thorpe Park and it provides an entry level thrill coaster which is a good mid point between Flying Fish and the bigger coasters.

More realistically I don't actually think Thorpe will add anything big for years...sadly.
Thorpe is clearly focused on a different audience, a mid tier woodie akin to Wickerman does nothing in a park which caters to teens and above. It works at AT because they have enough for all ages, but TP's under 10 offering is absolutely **** so unless they bung in 4 or 5 mid range rides within a 2-3 year timeframe it's pointless.
 
Seen this on Instagram and people are getting potentially hyped! I'm not getting too excited cause it could be anything. IMG_20200106_230618_454.jpg
Also, apparently there is a crane or something and a path cleared on the second image I screenshot from the same guy.
Screenshot_20200106_230746.jpg
Again, not getting hyped at all, but some believe its something related to the Watch. This. Space on the Thorpe Park website as well as the Initializing 2020 teaser.

But my theory about "Initializing 2020" is that its not for a 2020 addition cause intializing can assume it is for a future year, so my theory could be correct or incorrect but not confirming anything.
 

JoshC.

Active Member
Okay, let's reign this back and put some facts out there...

The park usually do things like this, and it can be for a variety of reasons:
1) It is good practice to keep these not used areas reasonably tidy so that they can be accessed when needs be
2) It gives the Landscaping team something to do to test out new equipment / train new staff with low pressure, or to give them something to do during quiet periods.
3) To test the land

We saw them go some tidying of the grassy areas by Loggers last year which of course meant naff all (it wasn't related to Creek Freak).

Also, that image from Google Maps was updated in June 2019. The fact that so few people noticed when on park shows that this is not as noticeable or extreme as Google Maps suggest either.

The second screenshot with the crane is from Snapchats and is old. Like, years old.

Of course, if the park were to open a new coaster, that space is one of the most obvious spaces to go for. But at this stage, we don't know how far away that could be, so who knows.


The Initializing 2020 thing is for 2020 attractions/experiences. It won't be for a future year's investment.

tl;dr - old image of standard work, nothing to get excited about. Sorry kids.
 
Okay, let's reign this back and put some facts out there...

The park usually do things like this, and it can be for a variety of reasons:
1) It is good practice to keep these not used areas reasonably tidy so that they can be accessed when needs be
2) It gives the Landscaping team something to do to test out new equipment / train new staff with low pressure, or to give them something to do during quiet periods.
3) To test the land

We saw them go some tidying of the grassy areas by Loggers last year which of course meant naff all (it wasn't related to Creek Freak).

Also, that image from Google Maps was updated in June 2019. The fact that so few people noticed when on park shows that this is not as noticeable or extreme as Google Maps suggest either.

The second screenshot with the crane is from Snapchats and is old. Like, years old.

Of course, if the park were to open a new coaster, that space is one of the most obvious spaces to go for. But at this stage, we don't know how far away that could be, so who knows.


The Initializing 2020 thing is for 2020 attractions/experiences. It won't be for a future year's investment.

tl;dr - old image of standard work, nothing to get excited about. Sorry kids.
I know. I even said when I posted it I'm not getting excited just yet
 

GregBoxall

New Member
This image was recently shared on Thorpe Parks twitter and Instagram accounts before being deleted shortly after.

I'm not going to jump to conclusions about what this means, but both this image and the intalizing for 2020 message have me feeling like they could be teasing something with a digital/cyber theme.

IMG_20200122_205634.jpg
 
This image was recently shared on Thorpe Parks twitter and Instagram accounts before being deleted shortly after.

I'm not going to jump to conclusions about what this means, but both this image and the intalizing for 2020 message have me feeling like they could be teasing something with a digital/cyber theme.

View attachment 7671
The Fact they are standing behind Stealth could suggest something around there, but I believe this could just be something like a Selfie Coaster Challenge lol Their version of Big Six Challenge
 
This image was recently shared on Thorpe Parks twitter and Instagram accounts before being deleted shortly after.

I'm not going to jump to conclusions about what this means, but both this image and the intalizing for 2020 message have me feeling like they could be teasing something with a digital/cyber theme.

View attachment 7671
So we all know how much Merlin love their IP's right? First INITIALISING and now Privacy and Pixelated Faces? Black Mirror anyone? No idea how on earth they'd make an experience out of that, but could be a potential thing?
 

Heth

New Member
To be honest I think it's unlikely we will get much of anything this year at all! If anything big were going in the planning application would already be in for it.

Going forward I fear Thorpe has passed its prime and we will continue to see limited investments in new rides. It is now 4 years since the last actual new ride (DBGT) that wasn't a retheme or temporary experience, and before that it was 2 years (2014 dodgems).
 
To be honest I think it's unlikely we will get much of anything this year at all! If anything big were going in the planning application would already be in for it.

Going forward I fear Thorpe has passed its prime and we will continue to see limited investments in new rides. It is now 4 years since the last actual new ride (DBGT) that wasn't a retheme or temporary experience, and before that it was 2 years (2014 dodgems).
What if they used a pre-built space? They're pretty limited with indoors locations, but i'm sure they could find somewhere. Hell it could even be something as simple as an event or maybe some form of an immersive AR game based around an app. Their budget is probably pretty small and I absolutely agree, we will see limited investments for a while, but I think something small scale like this is more realistic than a ride.

Do we know when the Angry Birds and Living Nightmare IP's are up? There's always possibility it could go in the theatre or at the back of X. Assuming Angry Birds would be first considering it's been around for a while!
 
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