UK Theme Parks – Drayton Manor

UK Theme Parks – Drayton Manor

Drayton Manor first opened its gates to the public in October 1949 as an inland pleasure resort and was originally just a normal park with tea rooms, boat rides and a pets corner. Since then it has grown substantially to become the UK’s leading family run theme park and the fourth most popular theme park in the UK (according to visitor numbers – over a million a year). The Parks’ motto is “Family Run for Family Fun”.

Situated near Tamworth, Staffordshire, Drayton Manor Theme Park stands in an area of 280 acres and boasts 36 rides in total including 4 roller coasters and 3 water rides. In 2006 Drayton Manor received two prestigious awards, “Best UK Attraction” awarded by Group Leisure and “UK Attraction of the Year” awarded by Coach Tourism. Within the park is a 15 acre zoo which houses over 100 species of animals.

Drayton Manor are proud to be the first in the world for some of their rides, for instance, the Apocalypse is the world’s first stand-up tower drop ride and G Force was the world’s first X Car Coaster (apart from its prototype in Germany). Also, some of the rides are the only ones in Europe, for instance, Shockwave, which is Europe’s only stand-up roller coaster. They were also the leaders, in the UK, for having the first water ride to have a backwards drop. Coaster enthusiasts recommend Shockwave because of its zero-g roll, this in fact, makes Shockwave the only stand-up coaster in the world to have this inversion.

Drayton Manor has several theme areas which can be characterized as: Action Park – where the white knuckle rides are housed. Aerial Park, with aerial-based rides which create an airborne atmosphere for the riders. Pirate Cove – where the swashbuckling rides are. Fisherman’s Wharf is based on a Cornish Fishing Village and holds the parks newest ride – The Bounty – a pirate ship ride, and finally, Robinson’s Land – where the brightly-colored smaller childrens rides are housed.

If you fancy a camping holiday at Drayton Manor, there is a 75 pitch camping and caravan site with on-site facilities such as toilets, showers, (for the disabled too), Elsen points and security. Not only are you situated on the park itself, but you are also close to a host of other local attractions and facilities.

A day at Drayton Manor is fun for all the family. Unfortunately, there are height restrictions on some of the rides, but the rides for the smaller children can also be white knuckled rides. Children over 1.4m can ride on all the rides. There are several rides which children under 1m must be accompanied by an adult. There are numerous places to eat and drink, so you will never need to go hungry.

The rides at Drayton Manor and the areas they are in:- Stormforce 10 is the parks most popular ride and situated in the Fisherman’s Wharf area. Included in this area are the Polperro Express Railway, Carousel, and the brand new The Bounty.

In the Action Park area of Drayton Manor is the Maelstrom, Chair Lift, Black Revolver, G-Force, Shockwave and Splash Canyon.

Drayton Manors Aerial Park is home to Apocalypse, Drayton Queen Boat, Sombrero, The Haunting, Big Wheel, Drunken Barrels, Wild West Shoot Out, Flying Dutchman, Buffalo Coaster and Pandemonium.

Pirate Cove is Drayton Manors swashbuckling pirate ride area and houses Excalibur – A Dragon’s Tail, Pirate Raft Ride, Jolly Buccaneer, Pirate Adventure, Jolly Roger and the Dodgems.

And for the smaller children at Drayton Manor, there is Robinson’s Land which has some big news happening in 2008. The rides in this area are: Cadbury’s Junior Pirate Ship, Vintage Cars, Arriva Crazy Bus, Frog Hopper, Whirly Wheel, Flying Jumbos, Ladybirds, Junior Carousel, Mini Balloons and Super Dragon Roller Coaster.

All in all, Drayton Manor has something for the whole family and is well worth a family day trip this summer. For opening times and prices check out Drayton Manor Home Page