Thorpe Park

Coordinates: 51°24′17″N 0°30′47″W / 51.40472°N 0.51306°W / 51.40472; -0.51306
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Thorpe Park Resort
Thorpe Park logo.png
LocationChertsey and Staines, Surrey, England
Coordinates51°24′17″N 0°30′47″W / 51.40472°N 0.51306°W / 51.40472; -0.51306
Opened24 May 1979; 44 years ago (1979-05-24)
OwnerSecure Income REIT PLC
Operated byMerlin Entertainments
General managerNeil Poulter (Divisional Director)
SloganAn Island Like No Other
Operating seasonMid/Late March – late October/early November
Attendance2021: 1,218,750 (Increase117%)
Area74 acres (0.30 km2; 30 ha)
Water rides4

Thorpe Park Resort, commonly known as Thorpe Park, is an amusement park located in the village of Thorpe between the towns of Chertsey and Staines-upon-Thames in Surrey, England, 20 miles (32 km) southwest of Central London. It is operated by Merlin Entertainments and includes rides, themed cabins, live events and Stealth, the United Kingdom's fastest rollercoaster. In 2019 Thorpe park was the UK's third most visited theme park (1.9 million visitors), behind Alton Towers and Legoland Windsor.[1] However, in 2020, due to the coronavirus pandemic, the park only had a 125-day operation season, along with limited capacity, leading to massively reduced visitor numbers.[citation needed] Despite this, Thorpe Park was the second most attended theme park in the UK in 2020, behind Alton Towers.[1]

After demolition of the Thorpe Park Estate in the 1930s, the site became a gravel pit managed by Ready Mix Concrete (RMC). When the pits were expended, RMC regenerated the site for leisure, opening Thorpe Park as an outdoor activity park in 1979. It has since grown into one of the major theme parks in the UK.

Major attractions include Tidal Wave, a large water ride, a number of rollercoasters including Colossus, Nemesis Inferno, Stealth, Saw – The Ride, The Swarm, The Walking Dead: The Ride, and Ghost Train, a dark ride.


Thorpe Park Lake in July 1979, the year the park opened to the public

The demolition of the Thorpe Park Estate in the 1930s saw the grounds transform into a gravel pit, originally owned by Ready Mixed Concrete Limited. When the pits were expended, RMC flooded part of the site. In 1975 the Water Ski World Championships were held on the site.[2] RMC established a subsidiary, Leisure Sport Limited, to operate a 400-acre (160 ha) park for water sports, leisure and heritage exhibitions, at a cost of £3 million.[3]

The park was officially opened to the public by Lord Louis Mountbatten on 24 May 1979, his final public appearance shortly before he was assassinated by a bomb on board in a fishing boat planted by the Provisional IRA in Mullaghmore, Ireland. In addition to lakes and parkland, the park featured a replica Stone Age cave, Celtic farm, Norman castle and Viking camp as well as ancient water vehicles and aircraft.[3]

Between 1983 and 1989 it was regularly used as a filming location for The Benny Hill Show.

In the early 80s, the park redeveloped into a theme park with permanent themed rides and attractions.[4] New attractions were opened throughout the 1980s and 1990s. Space Station Zero was the park's first rollercoaster, opening in 1984.[5] The last large attraction opened by the park's original owners was "X:\No Way Out" in 1996.

In 1998, The Tussauds Group bought the park. From the outset the park started opening key attractions such as Tidal Wave in 2000, Colossus in 2002, Nemesis Inferno in 2003 and Stealth in 2006.[6]

In May 2007, Blackstone Group purchased The Tussauds Group for US$1.9 billion and the company was merged into Merlin Entertainments, who took over operation of Thorpe Park.[7][8] Dubai International Capital also gained 20% of Merlin Entertainments.[9]

On 17 July 2007, as part of the financing for the Tussauds deal, Merlin sold Thorpe Park to private investor Nick Leslau and his investment firm Prestbury, under a sale and leaseback agreement.[10] Although it is owned by Prestbury, the site is operated by Merlin based on a renewable 35-year lease.[7]

The target audience for the resort is teenagers and young adults, adding rides such as Saw – The Ride and The Swarm for example. In 2014, Merlin decided to also target a more broad-family based market with new attractions such as Angry Birds Land and the park's onsite hotel.[11]

On 20 February 2019, the official Twitter account of Thorpe Park confirmed the permanent closure of Logger's Leap, a log flume that opened in 1989 but had been closed since 2015 due to the Smiler accident at Alton Towers that year.[12]

In 2021, Thorpe park announced plans for a new rollercoaster in the Old Town section of the park, planned to open for the 2024 season, under the project name of Project Exodus. This ride is set to be the tallest ride in the UK, at a height of 236 feet (71.93 metres).[13]

Rides and Attractions[edit]


Name Picture Type Opened Territory Manufacturer Additional Information
The Swarm The swarm drop, thorpe park, england.jpg Wing Coaster 2012 Swarm Island Bolliger & Mabillard The UK's first winged coaster, opened in 2012. Was the first winged coaster to feature an inverted 'wing-over drop'. Between 2013 and 2016, the rear two rows were modified to face backwards. The Swarm is the only ride on Swarm Island. Minimum height 1.4 m (4 ft 7 in). Max Height Limit is 1.95 m (6 ft 5 in).
SAW -The Ride Sawopen.jpg Euro-Fighter 2009 Saw Island Gerstlauer A custom Eurofighter featuring a 100 degree 100 ft (30 m) drop. Themed around the SAW movie franchise. It was branded as the world's first horror movie themed rollercoaster. Minimum height 1.4 m (4 ft 7 in).
Stealth Stealth Thorpe Park.jpg Hydraulic Launched Coaster 2006 Amity Speedway Intamin An Intamin hydraulic launch coaster, 205.1 ft (62.5 m) tall and accelerating from 0 to 80 mph (0 to 129 km/h) in 1.9 seconds.[14] It is the second tallest coaster in the UK and also the fastest, commonly recognised as the park's flagship attraction. It has a loose 1950s-era drag racing theme. Minimum height 1.4 m (4 ft 7 in). Max height limit is 1.95 m (6 ft 5 in).
Nemesis Inferno Nemisis inferno.jpg Inverted 2003 The Jungle Bolliger & Mabillard A B&M inverted coaster opened in 2003, named after Nemesis at Alton Towers. It has a loose volcano theme and features the first interlocking corkscrews on an inverted coaster. Minimum height 1.4 m (4 ft 7 in). It was filmed for The Inbetweeners episode "Thorpe Park".
Colossus Colossus (Thorpe Park).jpg Steel Sit down 2002 Lost City Intamin Opened in 2002, achieving the world record for 'most inversions on a rollercoaster', with 10 inversions (this record was beaten by The Smiler with 14 inversions in 2013), marketed as 'the world's first ten looping rollercoaster'. It is loosely-themed around traversing the ruins of a lost Atlantean civilization. Minimum height 1.4 m (4 ft 7 in). Max height limit is 1.95 m (6 ft 5 in)
Walking Dead: The Ride X-nowayout.jpg Steel Sit down 1996 (2013) (2018) The Dock Yard Vekoma Located at the centre of the park in a pyramid. Based on The Walking Dead franchise. On peak days, the ride's exit also includes live actors. Previously known as X (with a rave/dance music theme) and originally X:\No Way Out (with a computer virus theme). Minimum height 1.4 m (4 ft 7 in).
Flying Fish Thorpe Park flying fish 1.jpg Steel powered coaster 1984 (1990) (2007) Amity Beach Mack Rides Powered coaster. Opened in 1984 as an indoor coaster named Space Station Zero. It moved outdoors in 1990, in the location now occupied by Stealth. It reopened next to Amity Beach in 2007. Minimum height 0.9 m (2 ft 11 in).

Thrilling flat rides[edit]

Name Picture Type Opened Territory Manufacturer Additional Information
Samurai Samurai Thorpe Park.jpg Top Scan 2004 Old Town Mondial Top scan ride, formerly at Chessington World of Adventures Resort under the same name. The ride was repainted when it moved to Thorpe Park. Minimum height 1.4 m (4 ft 7 in).
Quantum Thorpe Park Quantum ride.jpg Magic Carpet 2003 Lost City Fabbri Group Large magic carpet ride. Minimum height 1.2 m (3 ft 11 in).
Zodiac Zodiac thorpe park.jpg Enterprise 2000 (2001) (2006) Lost City HUSS HUSS enterprise that first opened in 2000 as 'Enterprise', intended as a temporary attraction. It was renamed to 'Zodiac' (and made a permanent attraction) in 2001. At the end of the 2005 season, Zodiac was removed, and replaced by another HUSS Enterprise, relocated from Drayton Manor, where it was known as Cyclone. The replacement opened at the start of the 2006 season.[15] Minimum height 1.1 m (3 ft 7 in).
Vortex Vortex in action - - 1294900.jpg Afterburner 2001 Lost City KMG KMG Afterburner ride that opened in June 2001. Minimum height 1.4 m (4 ft 7 in).
Detonator Fasten Your Safety Belts^ - - 1165821.jpg Drop Tower 2001 Angry Birds Land Fabbri Group 35m tall drop tower. Originally named 'Detonator' and was added following the Thorpe Park fire. It was intended to be temporary addition to the park, but was later made a permanent addition. It was renamed 'Detonator: Bombs Away' for the opening of Angry Birds Land in 2014. in 2023 it was renamed back to 'Detonator'. Max speed 45 Mph, Max G-force of 5.5G. Minimum height 1.3 m (4 ft 3 in).
Rush Rushtp.jpg Screamin' Swing 2005 Lost City S&S Power Screamin' Swing which opened alongside Slammer in 2005. Minimum height 1.3 m (4 ft 3 in).

Water Rides[edit]

Name Picture Type Opened Territory Manufacturer Additional Information
Rumba Rapids River rapids ride 1987 The Jungle Intamin It opened in 1987 as Thunder River and is one of the earliest remaining rides at Thorpe Park. It was sponsored by Ribena as Ribena Rumba Rapids from 2002 until 2006 until 2007 when the sponsorship was removed.
Storm Surge Thorpe Park - Storm Surge.jpg Spinning Rapids Ride 2011 Amity WhiteWater West The ride has a 19.5 m (64 ft) lift and spins riders down a spiral chute. Originally located at Cypress Gardens, until Merlin acquired the park and made it Legoland Florida.
Tidal Wave Tidal Wave Thorpe Park.jpg Shoot the Chute 2000 Amity Hopkins Rides When the ride was opened in 2000 it was the tallest water ride in Europe. The ride has had many sponsors including Dr Pepper and Oasis. Minimum height 1.2 m (3 ft 11 in).
Depth Charge Thorpe park skyline.jpg Water slide 1991 Amity Beach NV Aquatic Opened as the first four lane dinghy waterslide in the UK.

Family flat rides[edit]

Name Picture Type Opened Territory Manufacturer Additional Information
Mr Monkey's Banana Ride Banana Boat.png Pirate Ship 1994 The Jungle Metallbau Emmeln A small banana themed swinging ship ride themed to one of the Thorpe Park Rangers. Minimum height 0.9 m (2 ft 11 in).
Dobble Tea Party Storm In A Teacup.jpg Teacups 1986 Amity Mack Rides A teacups ride. Minimum height 1.1 m (3 ft 7 in). Originally sponsored by the Tetley brand of Tea, and was called 'Storm in a Tea Cup'. Received a Dobble card game sponsorship in 2023.
King Pig's Wild Hog Dodgems Dodgems 2014 Angry Birds Land Bertazzon Dodgems ride added in 2014 for Angry Birds Land. Minimum height 1.1 m (3 ft 7 in) (with guardian over 1.3 m (4 ft 3 in)).
High Striker Frog Hopper 2017 (2022) Amity Zamperla A Frog Hopper ride, relocated from Weymouth Sea Life, and opened in Old Town, as 'Lumber Jump', in 2017. Was rethemed and moved to Amity in 2022 as High Striker.

Minimum height 0.9 m (2 ft 11 in).

Dark rides and other rides[edit]

Name Picture Type Opened Territory Manufacturer Additional Information
Ghost Train Dark Ride 2023 The Dock Yard Merlin Magic Making, Intamin, Simworx Multi-sensory dark ride featuring live actors. Rethemed from Derren Brown’s Ghost Train.
Black Mirror Labyrinth Maze Attraction 2021 Old Town Merlin Magic Making A maze using cutting-edge technology & sensory-defying environments. Based on the Netflix series Black Mirror.
Angry Birds 4D Experience 4D Cinema 2014 Angry Birds Land Simworx 4D Cinema showing the Angry Birds 4D movie. Replaced Pirates 4-D and Time Voyagers.
Amity Beach Thorpe Park fly motion.jpg Beach Area with Pool and Waterslides 1979 Amity Thorpe Park Originally named "Fantasy Reef", and 'exclusively for families with young children'. This attraction is intermittently open, generally only being open on certain days in the summer, weather permitting.[16]

Attractions under construction[edit]

Name Type Expected Opening Site Manufacturer Additional Information
Project Exodus Hypercoaster 2024 Area formerly known as "Old Town" Unconfirmed (Speculated to be Mack Rides) Set to become the UK's tallest rollercoaster at 236ft. The ride will be located in the area formerly occupied by Old Town and Loggers Leap.

Former attractions[edit]

Name Picture Type Opened Closed Territory Manufacturer Additional Information
Slammer Slammer at Thorpe Park - - 467533.jpg Sky Swat 2005 2017 Old Town S&S Worldwide This was the last Sky Swatter in the world. It was permanently closed in 2017 after being plagued with technical issues for much of its period of operation. Currently standing but not operating. Minimum height 1.4 m (4 ft 7 in).
Logger's Leap Off to get wet - - 1293811.jpg Log Flume 1989 2015 Old Town Mack Rides Was the tallest log flume in the UK. The ride was last operational during the 2015 season, with the closure being officially confirmed during the 2019 season. It has now been nearly entirely removed to make way for Project Exodus.
The Rocky Express The Rocky Express - - 1294763.jpg Sea Storm 1989 2021 Old Town Mack Rides Family friendly spinning train ride. Minimum height 0.9 m (2 ft 11 in). Closed and removed to make way for Project Exodus.[17]
Canada Creek Railway Canada Creek Railway - - 1294757.jpg Miniature Railway 1989 2011 Old Town Severn Lamb[18] A miniature railway inside the park, which used to take guests from the (previously known as) 'Canada Creek' area of the park to the (now closed) 'Thorpe Farm' area of the park, with the return journey taking a detour through the woods behind the Old Town area, following a similar route to Logger's Leap. After the closure of Thorpe Farm in 2006,[19] the railway only traversed the loop by Logger's Leap.[18]
Thorpe Farm Thorpe Farm (geograph 2993444).jpg Petting farm 1982 2006 Thorpe Farm N/A A petting farm, accessible via the Canada Creek Railway or a ferry over Manor Lake (formerly being reachable by foot until 1992). This area was intended to be somewhat educational, not only allowing guests to get up close and personal with farm animals, but also to learn a bit about caring for these farm animals (and general farm activities). This area also featured a play area, and several shops and food outlets. Thorpe Farm was closed due to dwindling guest numbers in 2006, with the animals being rehomed. The area is currently inaccessible to guests, and is now used for storage and horticultural purposes.[19][20]
Wet Wet Wet 3 Lane Water Slide 1998 2022 Amity Beach WhiteWater West[21] Three waterslides, primarily designed for younger children, located in the Amity Beach area. This ride was rarely open; being part of Amity Beach, it could only be open when the rest of the attraction was open, but even then, this was not guaranteed to be open as well.
Thorpe Park rides from the lake - - 4405459.jpg
Ferris Wheel 2003 2004 Lost City Fabbri Group A ferris wheel. Closed at the end of the 2004 season due to negative guest feedback.[22] Replaced by Rush for the 2005 season. Eclipse was relocated to Chessington World of Adventures, where it reopened as Peeking Heights in 2005.


Since 2016, Thorpe Park is zoned into eight 'island territories'.

This is a stopgap mapping solution, while attempts are made to resolve technical difficulties with {{OSM Location map}}
Themed 'island territory' areas at Thorpe Park 
  •  Port & Basecamp 
  •  Amity 
  •  The Jungle 
  •  Angry Birds Land 
  •  Old Town 
  •  Lost City 
  •  Swarm Island 
  •  The Dock Yard 
  • Port and Basecamp includes the turnstile entrance, bridge, the dome and the playground.
  • Amity (originally 'Amity Cove') opened with Tidal Wave and now includes Stealth, Depth Charge, Amity Beach, High Strikers & Storm Surge.
  • The Jungle contains Nemesis Inferno, Rumba Rapids, Mr Monkey's Banana Ride and a street of restaurants.
  • Angry Birds Land is in partnership with the Angry Birds video game. Attractions in this area include Angry Birds 4D, Detonator: Bombs Away and King Pig's Wild Hog Dodgems.
  • Old Town is located towards the back of the park and includes Saw - The Ride & Black Mirror Labyrinth
  • Lost City contains Colossus, Rush, Quantum, Vortex and Zodiac.
  • Swarm Island opened as the plaza for The Swarm.
  • The Dock Yard (previously named 'The Depot' and 'Thorpe Junction') is the plaza immediately outside Ghost Train, previously known as "Derren Brown's Ghost Train" and includes the nearby The Walking Dead: The Ride rollercoaster, previously known as "X" and "X:\ No way out".

Port and Basecamp[edit]

The 'Basecamp' area contains security, the turnstiles, toilets, business/staff reception, 'Island HQ' and bridge where guests enter the park. This leads to 'The Dome' which acts as a hub for the park, which houses 'Vibes Bar & Kitchen' (formerly Infinity Bar & Kitchen), an arcade area, The Coffee Shack, toilets, lockers, the Island Gift Shop, guest services, first aid, photo points and staff areas (canteen, 'The Core' and offices).

The dome was previously known as 'Port Atlantis' with an underwater Atlantian themed interior. Much of the scenery and underwater effects went missing since Merlin's acquisition of the park and was removed altogether after the building's change of theme.

The Dome remains open outside park operating hours to provide entertainment and dining facilities for guests staying at Thorpe Shark Cabins, including a breakfast buffet.


Amity is set as a 1950s-era American fishing village hit by a tidal wave and opened with Tidal Wave in 2000. It was previously named 'Amity Cove', as still named on themed signage. The area was expanded in 2006 with Stealth, set at 'Amity Speedway' racetrack. It later took on attractions from the former 'Neptune's Beach' family area, Depth Charge, and Amity Beach outdoor water park. Amity and Amity Speedway are no longer physically connected, being divided by Angry Birds Land.

It also includes attractions from the former 'European Park' area, Flying Fish and Storm In A Teacup. Flying Fish was originally located beside Tidal Wave (where Stealth sits today) but was removed following construction of Stealth in 2005. It was reopened, in its present location near The Swarm, in 2007, due to popular demand. In 2011, the raft water ride Storm Surge was re-located from Cypress Gardens in Florida, USA, before it was rethemed into Legoland Florida. Storm Surge was built on the former site of the Octopus Garden children's area.

The Jungle[edit]

The area's main attractions are Nemesis Inferno, a Bolliger & Mabillard inverted coaster set in a volcano, and Rumba Rapids a river rapids ride. The area was previously named 'Calypso Quay', the area now also includes part of the former 'Ranger County' family area, including Mr Monkey's Banana Ride a small swinging ship ride, as well as shopfronts and restaurants from the former 'European Park' area.

Angry Birds Land[edit]

Angry Birds Land opened in May 2014 and is themed to the Angry Birds media franchise. Attractions include Angry Birds 4D (a 4D cinema), King Pig's Wild Hog Dodgems (dodgems), and Detonator (a drop tower ride).

The Dock Yard[edit]

This area is primarily the plaza for Ghost Train, an indoor dark ride, and also contains The Walking Dead: The Ride an indoor rollercoaster. The area has no major themed features, other than buildings and scenery remaining from 'Octopus's Garden' (a since-closed children's area) which was later themed to Amity such as the Megastore, various buoys, and a carnival game that resembles a cargo ship.

Lost City[edit]

The Lost City's theme is that of the ruins of a recently unearthed Atlantean civilisation, with Colossus as the main attraction (since 2002). The area first opened in 2001 with the Vortex and Zodiac rides as the only attractions. In 2003, this area was expanded further, with the additions of Quantum (a magic carpet ride) and Eclipse (a Ferris Wheel). Eclipse was removed after the 2004 season (being relocated to Chessington World of Adventures);[22] in its place, Rush, an S&S Screamin' Swing, was opened in the 2005 season. At the end of the 2005 season, Zodiac was removed, and replaced with a new HUSS Enterprise (relocated from Drayton Manor, where it operated under the name Cyclone, until it had to be closed down due to noise complaints). The replacement Zodiac opened (without fanfare) for the 2006 season.[15]

Old Town[edit]

The main ride in this area is Saw - The Ride, a Gerstlauer Euro-Fighter with a 100 ft (30 m), 100-degree beyond vertical drop. The ride is themed to the Saw horror movie franchise and is set in a derelict warehouse/sawmill. A flat ride called Samurai was relocated from Chessington World of Adventures in 2004. The area is also home to the brand new 2021 experience Black Mirror Labyrinth and will be home to the planned "Project Exodus" hyper coaster. Old Town also includes a Burger King.

The area was previously named 'Canada Creek' and was the plaza for Logger's Leap, which opened in 1989 as one of the tallest log flumes in the world. It had a loose Canadian forest theme, although this has mostly been lost through redevelopments and resembles more of a Western town theme. The main attractions listed in the area sat outside the plaza. Logger's Leap ceased to operate after the 2015 season, and its permanent closure was confirmed in 2019.[12] It also used to have the main station for the Canada Creek Railway, a miniature railway which used to take guests to and from the (now closed) 'Thorpe Farm' area of the park, and around the backwoods of Canada Creek (after the closure of Thorpe Farm, it only traversed the backwoods of the Canada Creek area). The railway was closed during the 2008 season (and the track had to be partially rerouted due to the construction of SAW - The Ride), before being closed permanently at the end of the 2011 season.[18] In the years since its closure, the trains, station, and route used by this ride were utilized by several Fright Nights attractions.[23]

Most of the rides in this area have been closed since the start of the 2022 season, due to construction work for Project Exodus.[17]

Swarm Island[edit]

Swarm Island is the plaza area for The Swarm, a Bolliger & Mabillard wing-rider rollercoaster, opened in 2012. The area was built on land reclaimed from the surrounding lakes. The area is themed as the scene of an apocalyptic disaster/alien invasion from "The Swarm" which is intertwined with the area and ride station. Major theming pieces include a crashed plane, various damaged emergency vehicles like a helicopter and fire truck, a partially destroyed church (used as the ride station), and other destroyed structures. Many of the areas facilities are based within these structures, such as the ride station being housed in the church, the shop being housed in a shipping container, and the ride control room being based in an overturned police trailer wedged in the roof of the church.

Records held by the park[edit]

  • Nemesis Inferno is the first inverted coaster to feature interlocking corkscrews (in the same layout).
  • Additionally, the world record for 'most naked people on a rollercoaster' was set on Nemesis Inferno in May 2004.[24]
  • The Swarm opened as Europe's tallest wing coaster and the first coaster in the world to feature the "wing over drop".
  • SAW - The Ride was marketed as having the world's steepest 'freefall' drop,[25] and as the world's first horror movie themed roller coaster. SAW - The Ride was not actually the steepest rollercoaster in the world when it opened in March 2009 - Steel Hawg at Indiana Beach had opened the previous year with a steeper 111° drop. However, whilst Steel Hawg's drop has brakes on it, SAW's drop is brakeless - hence it being marketed as having the steepest freefall drop. This particular accolade was taken by The Monster in 2016 (and, as of 2022, is held by Defiance).
  • Colossus held the world record for the most inversions on a rollercoaster when it opened in 2002, with 10 inversions. This record was matched in 2006 by "10 Inversion Coaster" (an exact clone of Colossus) and then beaten in 2013 by The Smiler at Alton Towers Resort, with 14 inversions.
  • Stealth is the UK's fastest roller coaster, launching from 0–80 mph (0–129 km/h) in 1.9 seconds. The signage outside of the ride indicates a slower acceleration of 0–80 mph (0–129 km/h) in 2.3 seconds; this discrepancy is because the ride's launch was modified to accelerate faster in the off-season of 2013 (whilst the signage was left as-is). Standing at 205.1 ft (62.5 m), it is also the UK's second tallest roller coaster (behind the Big One at Blackpool Pleasure Beach which is 213ft). (although The Big One's top speed is listed as 85mph on Blackpool Pleasure Beach's website, this is incorrect and the actual top speed is 74mph).
  • Tidal Wave opened as Europe's tallest water ride.
  • Project Exodus will be the tallest roller coaster in the UK at 236 ft (72 m).[13]


Thorpe Park events for the 2023 Season:

  • Mardi Gras (18 May – 11 June) which will entail "a variety of live entertainment" as it brings "a taste of New Orleans" to the park.
  • Carnival (21 July – 28 August) where live entertainment and a brand new stage show will be arriving to the park for a limited time.
  • Oktoberfest (8 September – 1 October) which the park offers live entertainment (music and roaming actors) at the Island Festival Centre (By Derren Brown's Ghost Train) and German food and drink offerings around the park. Rides and attractions are open until late and select rides have Bavarian themed music/ride announcements to fit with the Oktoberfest theme.
  • Fright Nights (6 October – 31 October) which the park offers a range of Halloween entertainment: including horror mazes, shows, scare zones and roaming actors. On top of this, rides and attractions are open until late – excluding Depth Charge (close at dusk).

In recent years, Thorpe Park has held a range of unique events such as Zombie Hunt (2018), GameFX (2019), ParkVibes (2021) and many more.

Fright Nights[edit]

Fright Nights,[26] formerly "Fright Nites" is Thorpe Park's annual Halloween event and also its largest Halloween event in the UK. It is an event that has been running at Thorpe Park since 2002, celebrating Halloween with the park staying open until late at night, as well as operating a range of temporary Halloween attractions. Roaming actors in costume or with make up can also be found around the park.[27] During Fright Nights, the park stays open until 9pm, with a range of "scare mazes" available for guests, who normally enter in groups of 8–10. "Face it Alone" has sometimes been available as an upcharge, where a guest enters unaccompanied and must sign a disclaimer before entering.[28]

In 2013, Fright Nights was relaunched with a horror movie theme, courtesy of a three-year contract with Lionsgate. All of the pre-existing Fright Nights attractions were removed with the exception of The Asylum and SAW: Alive to make way for new horror-film themed attractions.

In 2014, when the Thorpe Shark Hotel opened, Thorpe Park offered two overnight scare attractions, one of which involved a 'night terror' character appearing in guests' hotel rooms during the night. The other attraction, the 'Extra Cut', involved guests being 'kidnapped' from their hotel room during the night and chased throughout the park.[29][30]

In 2017 Fright Nights was reinvented with a Walking Dead theme. The addition of two Walking Dead attractions coincided with the season 8 premier of the show. SAW Alive, The Big Top and Platform 15 remained in operation from previous years, with Containment returning as an upcharge attraction.

In 2020, restrictions put into place due to the COVID-19 Pandemic meant that only two mazes operated: Platform 15 and Roots of Evil, both of which took place primarily outdoors. This led to a wide selection of scare zones introduced for the first time to Fright Nights, with The Swarm: Invasion located on Swarm Island, Creek Freaks Unchained in Old Town, The Fearstival Arena in The Dockyard, The Howling of LycanThorpe High in Lost City (on the site near Zodiac and Rush typically used for a scare maze), and Terror at Amity High returning for its third year on the Stealth Plaza. The Crows were also added as roaming actors dressed as scarecrows, based in a few main locations but found anywhere around the park, including interacting with other scare zones.[31]

Fright Nights attraction history
Year Attractions (number of seasons)
Freakshow 3D
2004 Carnival of the Bizarre
2005 The Asylum
2006 Se7en
2008 The Curse
2010 SAW: Alive
Dead End
2011 Experiment 10
2012 The Passing
2013 My Bloody Valentine
Cabin in the Woods
Blair Witch
2014 Studio 13
Extra Cut
2015 Containment
The Big Top
2016 Platform 15
2017 The Walking Dead:
Living Nightmare

The Walking Dead:

2018 The Walking Dead:
Do or Die

The Big Top: Showtime
Blair Witch
Terror at Amity High: High School SUCKS!
Screamplexx Cinema
Vulcan Peak
Dead Creek Woods
2019 Creek Freak Massacre
2020 The Swarm: Invasion
Roots of Evil
The Howling of LycanThorpe High
Creek Freaks Unchained
The Fearstival Arena
The Crows
2021 Platform 15: End of the Line
Creek Freak Massacre
Amity High vs LycanThorpe: LoveBITES!
The Crows of Mawkin Meadow
Birthday Bash
2022 Survival Games
The Terminal
Creek Freak Massacre: The Final Cut
Amity High vs LycanThorpe: Graduation SUCKS!
Death's Doors

  – Previous Fright Night attraction.   – Current Fright Night attraction.


Guests can stay over on-park at the 'Thorpe Shark Cabins', comprising 90 rooms converted from shipping containers with a link to facilities in the adjacent Dome. The accommodation takes its name from its shark head entrance feature built from recycled park signage.

The hotel initially opened in 2013 as 'The Crash Pad', run by external company Snoozebox. The temporary development was purchased by the park the following year and rebranded as the Thorpe Shark Hotel.[32]

Thorpe Park had originally been planning to build a permanent 250-bed hotel as far back as 2006. This would have been located on the opposite side of the lake, on the site of former excavation works, featuring a lakeside bar, health club and restaurant. Planning permission was granted in 2011.[33]

The development was pitched again following the installation of 'The Crash Pad' to "test market conditions". The park received planning permission to construct the permanent hotel in 2014, with construction planned to begin in 2016 and an opening in 2018. However, the hotel was never constructed and the Shark Hotel's planning permission was extended by 10 years instead.[34]

In 2023, new Swarm themed rooms opened in the Thorpe Shark Cabins. They feature special theming in the room and unlimited fastrack on The Swarm on your 2nd day

Operations and developments[edit]

Thorpe Park has a maximum capacity of 15,000 guests.[35][36]

In 2010, the park outlined a 5-year development plan that outlined new rollercoasters for 2012, which was later realised in The Swarm. The plan outlined another rollercoaster scheduled for 2015 as well as a permanent lakeside hotel, both of which have not come to fruition. No application was ever submitted for the 2015 development and the earmarked site behind The Swarm remains undeveloped.[citation needed]

On 26 November 2021, the park launched a public consultation website outlining a proposal for a brand new roller coaster.[37] Alongside this, leaflets were handed out to local residents, stating the proposal will 'involve the removal of existing old rides and replacement with a new roller coaster in the Old Town part of the resort'. The public consultation began on the 10 December 2021, with plans detailing a 236-foot (72 m) tall steel hyper coaster codenamed "Project Exodus".[37] An application for planning permission was submitted on the 14th of March 2022.[38]

Objections to the planning permission application were raised by Surrey Wildlife Trust, Natural England, and the Environment Agency; citing concerns regarding biodiversity impacts, pollution, and flood risks.[39] The concerns raised by Surrey Wildlife Trust and Natural England were addressed, leading to their objections subsequently being withdrawn,[40] however, the Environment Agency's concerns remained unresolved as of October 2022. On the 5th of October 2022, Runnymede Borough Council approved the application for "Project Exodus", but, due to the unresolved objection from the Environment Agency, the application had to be referred to the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities for approval[41] (under the terms of The Town and Country Planning (Consultation) (England) Direction 2021).

On the 1st of November 2022, a letter sent to Runnymede Borough Council on behalf of the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities stated that 'He is content that it should be determined by the local planning authority'.[42] Subsequently, Runnymede Borough Council granted planning permission for "Project Exodus" on the 2nd of November 2022.[43][44]

Construction for the project has begun with the manufacturer being confirmed as Mack Rides, the site of Old Town and the remaining rides have been flattened for the project and the ground pins for the ride's footers have arrived at the park.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Amusement and theme park attendance in UK 2020". Statista. Retrieved 30 March 2022.
  2. ^ "IWSF World Championship Historical Facts". International Waterski & Wakeboard Federation. Retrieved 27 April 2020.
  3. ^ a b "Glossy Image – But It's Still A Gravel Pit". Surrey Herald. Surrey. 24 May 1979.
  4. ^ "Park Plans Thrill Rides". Surrey Herald. 7 January 1982.
  5. ^ "Flying Fish". Thorpe Park. Retrieved 27 April 2020.
  6. ^ "Thorpe Park – Theme Park James". Retrieved 30 July 2021.
  7. ^ a b "Merlin conjures up leaseback deal". 17 July 2007 – via
  8. ^ Cho, David (6 March 2007). "Blackstone Buys Madame Tussauds Chain" – via
  9. ^ "Tussauds firm bought in £1bn deal". BBC News. 5 March 2007. Retrieved 12 May 2010.
  10. ^ "Alton Towers sold in £622m deal". BBC News. 17 July 2007. Retrieved 12 May 2010.
  11. ^ "Thorpe Park – Coasterpedia – The Roller Coaster Wiki".
  12. ^ a b "Thorpe Park Resort". Twitter. Retrieved 16 November 2020.
  13. ^ a b "The Proposal | Thorpe Park Resort". Thorpe Park Consultation. Retrieved 27 July 2022.
  14. ^ "Stealth - Thorpe Park (Chertsey, Surrey, England, United Kingdom)". Retrieved 19 August 2022.
  15. ^ a b "Zodiac, Thorpe Park". Theme Park James. Retrieved 19 August 2022.
  16. ^ "Amity Beach: Outdoor Water Park | Thorpe Park Resort". Thorpe Park. Retrieved 23 August 2022.
  17. ^ a b "Project Exodus | Theme Park Guide". Retrieved 27 July 2022.
  18. ^ a b c "Canada Creek Railway". Attraction Source. Retrieved 19 August 2022.
  19. ^ a b Weir, Luke (27 March 2022). "Thorpe Farm: Thorpe Park's beloved lost attraction". SurreyLive. Retrieved 19 August 2022.
  20. ^ "Thorpe Farm". Attraction Source. Retrieved 19 August 2022.
  21. ^ "Wet Wet Wet at Thorpe Park Reviews & Info". Theme Park Tourist. Retrieved 19 August 2022.
  22. ^ a b "Eclipse, Thorpe Park". Theme Park James. Retrieved 19 August 2022.
  23. ^ "Canada Creek Railway - Platform 15 - Thorpe Park". Canada Creek Railway - Platform 15 - Thorpe Park. Retrieved 19 August 2022.
  24. ^ "Naked rollercoaster record feat". 21 May 2004. Retrieved 27 July 2022.
  25. ^ "You gotta roll with it". 13 March 2009. Retrieved 19 August 2022.
  26. ^ "FRIGHT NIGHTS at THORPE PARK Resort".
  27. ^ "Haunted Attractions UK – Thorpe Park Fright Nights... an EVILution!". Archived from the original on 26 December 2013. Retrieved 30 August 2007.
  28. ^ "What to expect from Face it Alone 2016 (my first ever.)". Thorpe Park Mania Forums.
  29. ^ "UK Theme Park Round-Up – October Review and November 2014 Preview". Theme Park Tourist. 2 November 2014. Retrieved 27 July 2022.
  30. ^ Townshend, Georgina (10 October 2014). "Dare you brave the horrors of Thorpe Park's Fright Nights?". SurreyLive. Retrieved 27 July 2022.
  31. ^ "FRIGHT NIGHTS FEARSTIVAL Announcement". Thorpe Park. Retrieved 21 February 2021.
  32. ^ Sim, Nick. "Thorpe Park names new hotel for 2014 as Thorpe Shark Hotel". Theme Park Tourist. Retrieved 18 April 2017.
  33. ^ "Thorpe Park Resort Hotel". Attraction Source. Retrieved 23 August 2022.
  34. ^ Total Thorpe Park. "Thorpe Park Hotel planning". Theme Park Tourist. Retrieved 21 May 2019.
  35. ^ Crowds force closure of theme parkThe Guardian. 17 April 2006. Retrieved 16 November 2021.
  36. ^ Theme Parks Operation in ChertseyScoot. Retrieved 16 November 2021.
  37. ^ a b "Public Consultation | Thorpe Park Resort". Thorpe Park Consultation. Retrieved 27 July 2022.
  38. ^ Josh (14 March 2022). "Project Exodus Plans Submitted". Thorpe Park Mania. Retrieved 13 November 2022.
  39. ^ Lewis (9 July 2022). "Latest activity on Thorpe Park Resort's Project Exodus planning application". Attraction Source. Retrieved 13 November 2022.
  40. ^ Lewis (29 August 2022). "Progress continues on Thorpe Park Resort's Project Exodus planning application". Attraction Source. Retrieved 13 November 2022.
  41. ^ "Government to decide on Thorpe Park rollercoaster". RideRater. 5 October 2022. Retrieved 13 November 2022.
  42. ^ "Redevelopment of the "Old Town" area within Thorpe Park, Staines Road, Chertsey" (PDF). 1 November 2022. p. 2. Retrieved 13 November 2022. The Secretary of State has decided not to call in this application. He is content that it should be determined by the local planning authority
  43. ^ Lewis (3 November 2022). "UK's tallest rollercoaster Project Exodus approved for Thorpe Park Resort". Attraction Source. Retrieved 13 November 2022.
  44. ^ O'Brien, Christy (4 November 2022). "New Thorpe Park ride given the go-ahead: what it'll be like and when it could open". SurreyLive. Retrieved 13 November 2022.

External links[edit]