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Do Theme Parks Hibernate Over Winter?

  • Tuesday November 13th 2018
  • Michael

Colossus Rollercoaster Covered In Snow

So the gates have closed here at THORPE PARK Resort until March 2019 (although We do still get the odd guest arrive at around 9am asking if we’re open (please, please, PLEASE check the website before any visit, guys!)).

Is that it though? Do we just sit and twiddle our thumbs during these long, grey days? Why do theme parks have closed seasons and what happens during that time? We’re glad you asked!

Contrary to popular belief, here in the U.K. we live in what’s called a ‘temperate climate’, which means that we have defined seasons (although it’s hard to tell a lot of the time -cheers global warming!). Winter in Britain isn’t usually that great. We substitute blankets of pure, white snow with murky, grey clouds and endure a  temperature that switches between ‘no you won’t need a coat’ to ‘I wish I could wear my duvet’ in a matter of seconds.

This generally means that you guys don’t want to be 205ft in the air on Stealth in the middle of January or being drenched with the equivalent of 2.7 bath tubs of full water on Tidal Wave in the lead up to New Years.

Weather aside, the main reason we close over winter is to maintain our big steel babies.

Rides are hard-working pieces of machinery. In a day, a coaster might make hundreds of circuits of the track. Obviously they are maintained every day by our fantastic engineering team, but when the season comes to an end, they undergo a ton of additional TLC.

Every nut and bolt of every single ride is meticulously checked during the closed period and any components that need to be are replaced. We also use this period to work on construction projects like new retail units and changes to facilities.

Our HR team also begin the hiring process for the new season and the Marketing department work on the year ahead and all the exciting offerings we will be making. Throw in a butt load of cleaning and painting and suddenly, there’s no time to hibernate.  

So while it may seem like the park goes dark until March, in many ways, it’s our busiest time of year!




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