Helter skelter (ride)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

A helter skelter at the Royal Norfolk Show, near Easton, Norfolk, England

A helter skelter is an amusement ride with a slide built in a spiral around a high tower. Users climb up inside the tower and slide down the outside, usually on a mat or hessian (burlap) sack. Typically, the ride will be of wooden construction and, in the case of fairground versions, designed to be disassembled to facilitate transportation between sites. The term is primarily used in the United Kingdom.


The term "helter-skelter" was first recorded in the United Kingdom at Hull Fair in October 1905, taking its name from the much older adverb meaning "in confused, disorderly haste". Other recorded names for the slide include: Canadian slide, alpine glide, lighthouse slip, slipping the slip, and glacier slip.[1]

In popular culture[edit]

The ride inspired the Beatles song of the same name, which was interpreted by cult leader Charles Manson as a message predicting inter-racial war in the US. Manson titled his vision of this uprising scenario after the song.

This ride appears in the RollerCoaster Tycoon series of video games, Thrillville: Off the Rails as well as in Lego City Undercover.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Hull Daily Mail - Monday 9 October 1905

External links[edit]