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Photo TR: Fantasy Island (10-10-15)


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This past weekend I finally managed to get myself back to Fantasy Island during the operating season for the first time since the 2010 TPR UK Trip.

 

Fantasy Island has always had a soft spot in my heart because as a child we used to take our family holiday to Skegness and stay at Butlins just down the road. This meant that as a treat I would always get to go to the park and enjoy the rides while my parents went around the market. Sadly as I'm sure some of you are aware the park went into administration several months ago and things didn't looks too good! Well I'm glad to say the administrators have done a fantastic job with the park since they took over and the future is now looking very bright for the park with investment happening all over the place.

 

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Yay I'm finnally back at Fantasy Island!

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First stop Odyssey!

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Who wants to sit in this seat?

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The new train has done wonders for this ride! There is only one headbanger moment that I noticed which for an SLC is a great achievement in my books.

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Enjoy this colour scheme while you can because next year it will look completely different!

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After all the years of trouble this ride has had it seems they have finally managed to get on top of everything which is great!

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Keep an eye on TPR's YouTube channel and social network pages for some brand new POVs of this awesome SLC.

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After some awesome rides on Odyssey is was time to head to the parks other major coaster "The Millennium"

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This was actually the first major looping coaster I ever rode all the way back in 1999!

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Still to this day it is one of the smoothest coasters out there and without doubt the smoothest Vekoma coaster on the planet!

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You could call this Vekoma spaghetti.

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The way the ride circles the park is almost like something out of RCT but it works so well here.

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Who doesn't love a transfer track to no where!

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After some great Vekoma riding it was suggested to me that I go and ride "Dragon Mountain Descent" which is the parks indoor raft ride.

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Don't let this ride fool you with its awesome adventure theming.

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If you are are an adult you WILL get wet.

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I can promise you this sign does not lie at all!

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This is a prime example of why you get wet

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which is then very quickly followed by more wetness!

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Even though I was repeatedly told that I was going to get wet I was thinking to myself at this point "I don't remember getting wet as a child this will be fine".

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And at this point I thought "Damn it Craig your an idiot!"

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Which was then confirmed shortly after by more water!

 

If you don't believe me about how wet you get, watch this POV and find out for yourself!

[youtu_be]

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After getting changed I thought I would hit the parks Log Flume because there was no way it was going to be as wet as Dragon Mountain.

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As part of all the new investments in the park the Log Flume was repainted recently and looks great. It really is amazing what a lick of paint can do for a ride and the park as a whole.

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Even with 2 rides down today the reliability of the parks open attractions was fantastic and when a ride did go down the engineers got the ride back up in super quick time.

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The park also has a powered coaster called "Rhombus Rocket". Again a ride that recently has been repainted but it also interacts with many of the rides in the park which is fantastic.

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Hmmmm now why do you think Captain Rhombus' nose is red?

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Sadly the Crazy Mouse was closed all day during my visit

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But the new paint job looks fantastic. The conflict of names I do find off though. Some signs around the ride (including the lights at the top) say "Fantasy Mouse" while others say "Crazy Mouse". Yes that just me being a bit picky but I am a fan of consistency and continuity.

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Sometimes you just can't beat the classics!

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Fantasy Island does cater for every age of thrill seeker when it comes to their rides and attractions.

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Some of them are even too extreme for me!

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The Beast was also closed during my visit and will sadly be down for the rest of the season. It seems many parks are having issued with their Top Scans these days. None more that Thorpe Park though!

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Hmmmm whats wrong with this sign?

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Inside these doors are the hidden secrets of Fantasy Island!

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Which I am afraid I cannot

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What a fantastic philosophy to run a park by don't you agree?

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I love the whole indoor section of the park. The theming inside has really stood the test of time and looks great.

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How many people would love this kiddie credit?

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When this S&S tower opened years ago it had a very unique feature on it. Can anyone name what it was?

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How many coasters can you spot in this amazing view from the top of Volcano!

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Where does this door go to? If anyone gets it right you could win a prize!

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Sorry Elissa.......

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I wonder if these guys are related to Peppa Pig in any way?

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Clowns are evil!

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Sadly it was time to leave Fantasy Island and head home.

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But I can't leave without mentioning the best thing the park have done since my last visit! This car park used to be horrific for so many years but not its one of the best theme park car parks in the country!

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One last look at a great mess of Vekoma track then off home I headed.

 

Its so nice to see the park improving at such a rapid rate and doing better than I have seen in years. I would like to see a new ride investment in the next couple of years but space is very very tight so they may have to get creative in where they installed it. I do love all the kiddie rides at the park and they seemed very popular but the Monkey Jump (Frog Hopper) looked like its on its last legs. When I was watching it, it wasn't bouncing at all it was just raising slowly then coming down even slower. Hopefully its something that can be fixed as it looked like I was watching a glorified bench more than a Frog Hopper.

 

Still all said an done I had a fantastic trip to the park and I recommend if you get the chance to head down there next year to ride the "new" Odyssey, Millennium and all their other attractions. The parks future is looking bright so please support them! Also I would just like to say thank you to Sean and Craig because they were so much help with filming and navigating round the park and they should be very proud of the wonderful rides team they have assembled. Other parks should take note even on a quiet day their staff were very efficient and enthusiastic.

 

I hope you all enjoyed this trip report and remember to keep an eye out for all that new footage!

 

-Craig

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Great trip report, Fantasy Island looks like a good place to spend a day! I got a pretty good laugh out of your Dragon Mountain Descent POV, it looks so nice and innocent until those final turns where it suddenly seems to go into insane-mode!

 

Thanks for sharing!

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This past weekend I finally managed to get myself back to Fantasy Island during the operating season for the first time since the 2010 TPR UK Trip.

 

Fantasy Island has always had a soft spot in my heart because as a child we used to take our family holiday to Skegness and stay at Butlins just down the road. This meant that as a treat I would always get to go to the park and enjoy the rides while my parents went around the market. Sadly as I'm sure some of you are aware the park went into administration several months ago and things didn't looks too good! Well I'm glad to say the administrators have done a fantastic job with the park since they took over and the future is now looking very bright for the park with investment happening all over the place.

-Craig

 

I think my first credit was Butlins Skegness, back when the funfair was in a different location and much much bigger. There was almost like a homemade-coaster in a back corner near a car ride (I think it might have had trains instead of cars though since if my very foggy memory serves right, they had both at the time in 2 locations of the fair), it was blue track and was just a tiny chain lift followed by a drop and one hill in a circle and went round a few times before ending. It was ran by a guy with 2 giant levers. Sadly I've never been able to find a clear picture of it, I've seen a few pics here and there of what could be it or from another Butlins that could be a copy/similar but was never able to confirm.

 

The only photo I've found was this: http://www.butlinsmemories.com/skegness/photos1962/id014.htm based on the train ride and the two seater cars I remember I've always assumed it was that one, but I would have rode it around 30 years after this photo! I forgot how big Butlins funfairs used to be when I was a child compared to now.

 

I remember going to Fantasy Island each year also. That park was always changing. I miss g-force, the biggest version of the fabbri booster and also miss their giant slingshot with tilting seats they used to have near the, also gone, ferris wheel. I also remember Volcano having the tilting seats one year. Lastly I remember getting in line to get my tokens just after Odyssey opened and they were advertising a massive half pipe with rotating trains with a model in the inside area.

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There isn't a whole lot about this place beyond the pair of giant Vekoma Coasters that interests me, but since about the time they were built (also right around the time I became interested in coasters), it's been high on my list of parks to visit when I eventually make it out to Europe to ride. I'd love for some US park to order something similar to either of these off Vekoma's menu.

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Wow, definitely looks better than it did in 2010. How were the clientele?

 

Honestly everyone was fine. Far better than your average Thorpe Park clientele thats for sure!

 

I think my first credit was Butlins Skegness, back when the funfair was in a different location and much much bigger. There was almost like a homemade-coaster in a back corner near a car ride (I think it might have had trains instead of cars), it was blue track and was just a tiny chain lift followed by a drop and one hill in a circle and went round a few times before ending. It was ran by a guy with 2 giant levers. Sadly I've never been able to find a picture of it, I've seen a few pics here and there of what could be it at another Butlins or a copy but was never able to confirm.

 

I don't remember that. The only credit I remember at Butlins was the powered figure 8 Dragon coaster.

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Wow, definitely looks better than it did in 2010. How were the clientele?

 

Honestly everyone was fine. Far better than your average Thorpe Park clientele thats for sure!

 

I think my first credit was Butlins Skegness, back when the funfair was in a different location and much much bigger. There was almost like a homemade-coaster in a back corner near a car ride (I think it might have had trains instead of cars), it was blue track and was just a tiny chain lift followed by a drop and one hill in a circle and went round a few times before ending. It was ran by a guy with 2 giant levers. Sadly I've never been able to find a picture of it, I've seen a few pics here and there of what could be it at another Butlins or a copy but was never able to confirm.

 

I don't remember that. The only credit I remember at Butlins was the powered figure 8 Dragon coaster.

 

This would be early 90's. They had the one I mentioned and the powered dragon (which still lives on somewhere according to RCDB) After the chairlift but when they still had a monorail (I think the monorail had new trains around then). Butlins funfair seemed to change so much so often. One year there would be a massive pirate ship, another and the twister would be gone or the funfair had moved. It always seemed a huge funfair to have for a holiday camp,at least to the mind of a very young boy, but my Dad used to say that it was even bigger when he was a child. Seems back then Billy Butlin had a lot of camps and really put a lot into his fairs. One of the parks even had a boomerang at one point apparently.

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I also visited Fantasy Island earlier this year and the park looked like it was doing very well and it was extremely busy. A far cry from my previous and first visit where everything was closed bar Volcano, Beast and Odyssey!

 

I rode the new train earlier this year too and I actually found it very very headbangy, much worse than last year! Weird. The new train does look much nicer though. I was very very very impressed by Millenium though. What an amazing ride! The mouse had a 45 minute wait too.

 

The shot tower feature was tilting seats wasn't it?

 

Glad you had a fun day there!

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The shot tower feature was tilting seats wasn't it?

 

I'm not sure if that's the feature he is referring to in the picture though since it wasn't part of the ride when it opened but I can't think of anything else. We used to make yearly trips and I think remember my first ride on it was without the tilting seats. They were added some time later with a name change before it went back to being a normal S&Stower. Not sure if it was when it changed but it used to have a yellow cap at the end of the tower. I think they altered the name when they added the seats as well to perhaps help market it as a new attraction, not sure which was the original and which was the updated one but I have memories of it being called Volcanic Eruption and Volcanic Impact. Looking at the TR I guess they changed it again to Volcano.

 

I think the first time I ever went to FI was when they had a top spin ride where Beast was and then the year after that was a superbowl ride. I'd just hit the 1.4m when we visited Chessington when Samurai was the new ride (and we had quite a decent wait for it too) so I was so excited to discover Fantasy Island had a top-scan after that since it was my first big thrill ride especially with the cycle it ran, I think I spent about 90% of my normal tokens on it so it's sad to see that its down for the count now.

 

Does Butlins still have it's 3 slides, master blaster and space bowl flumes? They were my first ever water-slides.

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Does Butlins still have it's 3 slides, master blaster and space bowl flumes? They were my first ever water-slides.

 

No Butlins no longer has those slides. In 2012 they started a £13million redevelopment in the pool which included 3 new slides, an out door rapids and kids play area along other things. Bonus fact I was one of the last 100 people on the Master Blaster before it got decommisioned!

 

Great report. It's great the administrators are investing in the park rather than trying to wind it down. It really looks like it's working though and has breathed new life into what was a poorly run park.

 

The administrators obviously saw potential in the park which is great, I just hope that when they find a buyer for the park they find someone who is an enthusiastic about it as well.

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Wow, definitely looks better than it did in 2010. How were the clientele?

 

Thinking the same thing. Also, were the market stalls still as plentiful as they were in 2010?

Rows and rows and rows, I remember. Or has that been toned down in numbers?

 

Great TR by the way. There was a lot of stuff there I enjoyed, and even did some shopping

at one of those clothing stalls on the sidewalks, lol. I think the funniest part of it all for me,

was seeing how many could get into that teeny tiny coaster....

 

Mike, Ginny and somebody else I remember succeeding. Amazing the ride op let them ride, too.

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TPR 2010 Europe Tour

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Does Butlins still have it's 3 slides, master blaster and space bowl flumes? They were my first ever water-slides.

 

No Butlins no longer has those slides. In 2012 they started a £13million redevelopment in the pool which included 3 new slides, an out door rapids and kids play area along other things. Bonus fact I was one of the last 100 people on the Master Blaster before it got decommisioned!

 

I remember Center Parcs in Elveden having some really fun rapids, if they are anything like those I might have to head up to Skegness when I eventually come back to England.

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