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Drayton Manor sold to Looping Group (page 5)

bdrizzyb

New Member
I think it's worth looking at visitor numbers for the parks? I do think alot of looping's parks may only hit around the half a million mark on attendance figures. Where as Drayton manor is reported at still achiving just over a million, which potentially means it could get twice the investment than say Pleasurewood Hills gets. Also Draytons higher ticket price, we could be in for some moderately exciting times!!!
 

Matt N

Well-Known Member
I think it's worth looking at visitor numbers for the parks? I do think alot of looping's parks may only hit around the half a million mark on attendance figures. Where as Drayton manor is reported at still achiving just over a million, which potentially means it could get twice the investment than say Pleasurewood Hills gets. Also Draytons higher ticket price, we could be in for some moderately exciting times!!!
They’ve placed quite a bit of emphasis on the fact that Drayton Manor is the group’s “flagship park”, and that it gets more visitors per year than any other Looping Group park, so that sounds pretty exciting to me!
 

CrashCoaster

Well-Known Member
I know this is really unlikely but I've always thought something along the lines of an SRII would work well at Drayton. Either that or a family-thrill coaster, to bridge the gap between Accelerator and Shockwave. I reckon the park WILL get a coaster within the next few years, but it will probably be second hand in all honesty.
 

Ian

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I can't help but think that keeping on Bryan family may be more of a symbolic/token gesture, rather than a longer term strategy for the park. As fab as they are, and how nice and fluffy it is to maintain the family tradition and input, at some point "business" may have to take over if the park isn't performing. Others may have to be brought in to run the park. With Covid, everything is unstable at the moment so some kind of stability is good, but I wouldn't be at all surprised to see the Bryan family quietly leave in next couple of years.
 

Dar

Member
If there's a management team in place it's probably cheaper to keep them on and give them guidance from on high, rather than replace them. Depending on how compliant they are with being told what to do!

The family will have knowledge of/reputation with the area and council that will need careful mining too :p
 

bdrizzyb

New Member
Don't the Bryan family Live in houses built on park property as well? would be interesting to see if they still want to take the park down a more family with young kids route, or if they will now aim at more of an everyone market with retaining and adding to the thrill rides line up, now that there will be funding. The 'larger' looping's parks seem to cater to the wide market, with SLC's, Boomerangs, Inverted boomerangs and Vekoma whirlwind's (mini corkscrew) all signature rides within the company. Would have been interesting if G force was still standing to see if looping's would have re opened the ride.

I personally see it as looping's opportunity to progress, especially with the location of Drayton Manor that has the same large catchment area as Alton Towers!
 
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CrashCoaster

Well-Known Member
The Looping Group have added Drayton to their website and in doing so, they have increased their annual attendance from 4.3 million visitors a year to 5.5 million visitors a year. That's really significant, and will probably work wonders for the whole company, hopefully allowing them to invest more in all their parks.
 

bdrizzyb

New Member
The fact that they had 15 locations (9 parks with rides) at 4.3 million and Drayton increased there attendance by almost 22% is significant! most of there Large parks are sat comfortably being local attraction parks that don't really have a large catchment area. They push along with minor 2nd/3rd hand rides as new additions every few years. I think we could be in for a surprise with there additions to the park compared to the rest of the chain, I've looked up all there parks, it was in between Bagatelle and Pleasurewood Hills as there best park for rides, Pleasurewood tops it for best coaster selection in my opinion (although not for theming)! Drayton stands out significantly by far as the best put together park again with a great catchment area, where they can charge more therefore can invest heavier!

All I'm saying is fingers crossed for decent investment!
 
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JoshC.

Active Member
I mean, first of all they need to get Drayton making a profit.

And on top of that, they have:
-To deal with the fact they've got a rapids ride which has been sat there for 3 years following the death of a girl
-Bought a park which told staff at the beginning of the year they were going to remove their two biggest thrill ride (Shockwave and Apocalypse) at the end of the year
-Stiff competition from Towers

It's naive to think that in buying the park, it immediately means the company can wave a magic wand and pump money and attractions into it.

If the rumour of the park wanting to go full out into the younger family market is true (specifically targeting the 4-8 age bracket, which is Towers' weakest point), and the Looping Group decide to follow through with that, there's still a lot of work that needs doing. And if they do remove thrill rides, they ultimately need something to replace them to justify keeping ticket prices the same or similar.

There's cause for optimism in the sense that the park will survive and has a larger company behind it with a decent enough track record and the ability to make some investment, but I genuinely don't see this signalling anything significant for the park in terms of investments, or leading to anything major for their other parks.
 

Nicky Borrill

Active Member
If the rumour of the park wanting to go full out into the younger family market is true (specifically targeting the 4-8 age bracket, which is Towers' weakest point), and the Looping Group decide to follow through with that, there's still a lot of work that needs doing. And if they do remove thrill rides, they ultimately need something to replace them to justify keeping ticket prices the same or similar.
I wouldn’t worry about that, there’s nothing at all in the history of loopings to suggest that they’d be interested in continuing this direction... That’s if the rumours were ever true in the first place r.e the original owners... By all accounts they’ve made it very clear that this is their stepping stone, their flag ship park, their move into the big boys league...

You’re right in managing expectations... There isn’t going to be a new hyper or rmc built any time soon, but there WILL be investment, and it will now be across the board, and not just in Thomas Land. Probably focusing initially on getting existing infrastructure back up to a decent standard.

As a side note, how many of looping’s other parks have zoos? How much experience have they in that area? A zoo can be a massive selling point, but also a massive drain on resources. The zoo is one of my favourite positive sides of DM, will be interesting to see what the future holds for the zoo.
 

CrashCoaster

Well-Known Member
I wouldn’t worry about that, there’s nothing at all in the history of loopings to suggest that they’d be interested in continuing this direction... That’s if the rumours were ever true in the first place r.e the original owners... By all accounts they’ve made it very clear that this is their stepping stone, their flag ship park, their move into the big boys league...

You’re right in managing expectations... There isn’t going to be a new hyper or rmc built any time soon, but there WILL be investment, and it will now be across the board, and not just in Thomas Land. Probably focusing initially on getting existing infrastructure back up to a decent standard.

As a side note, how many of looping’s other parks have zoos? How much experience have they in that area? A zoo can be a massive selling point, but also a massive drain on resources. The zoo is one of my favourite positive sides of DM, will be interesting to see what the future holds for the zoo.
I mean they own West Midlands Safari Park in the same country as Drayton Manor so imagine they know how to take care of animals. ;)
 
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Nicky Borrill

Active Member
I mean they own West Midlands Safari Park in the same country as Drayton Manor so imagine they know how to take care of animals.
Ffs I knew that as well 🙈😂

Although they’ve probably had less than, or just over a full operating year at WMSP given the pandemic... So it will still be interesting...

And my question wasn’t so much questioning their ability to take care of animals as to their recognising the value of them... But given the wmsp acquisition last year, I’d say they have an interest in running animal parks 🙈😂
 

bdrizzyb

New Member
They actually have a few animal only based attractions. They own 'Planete Sauvage' safari park and 'Zoo de la Fleche' Zoo! They also have two aquariums as they own 'Grand Aquarium de Saint-Malo' and 'Grand Aquarium de Touraine'. All of which they have operated for multiple years so I do think Drayton Manor Zoo is in good hands.
 

Nicky Borrill

Active Member
They actually have a few animal only based attractions. They own 'Planete Sauvage' safari park and 'Zoo de la Fleche' Zoo! They also have two aquariums as they own 'Grand Aquarium de Saint-Malo' and 'Grand Aquarium de Touraine'. All of which they have operated for multiple years so I do think Drayton Manor Zoo is in good hands.
Thank you... As long as there is zero risk of them ever pulling the animals then I’m happy, and it seems that way. The Zoo is genuinely one of the best reasons for visiting DM, but it could use a little love. Seems like these guys are well versed in that area 🤞
 

bdrizzyb

New Member
Although the zoo does need work, I see it as something they will invest in sooner rather than later. With the animals they already have in there portfolio, they could cheaply introduce new enclosures and animals for the next investment, until they get to grips with the direction of the park.

Also does anyone know if the ride system for pirates adventure is still there, Could see them fixing that up and re theming it as a new attraction hopefully soon too, as that would be an affordable investment!
 

Leon

New Member
Although the zoo does need work, I see it as something they will invest in sooner rather than later. With the animals they already have in there portfolio, they could cheaply introduce new enclosures and animals for the next investment, until they get to grips with the direction of the park.

Also does anyone know if the ride system for pirates adventure is still there, Could see them fixing that up and re theming it as a new attraction hopefully soon too, as that would be an affordable investment!
I would love them to reopen pirates adventure it was a fab ride by uk standards and was really quite grand for a small park like drayton manor also what do you think the chances of them opening up the rapids again ?
 

bdrizzyb

New Member
Most the set pieces from inside pirates adventure were auctioned off earlier this year so it would have too be re themed unfortunately.

I think there is a high chance that the rapids will re open, but I bet they will be extensively re themed, given a new name and advertised as a new ride. sort of what they did with the log flume and Egg-Spress at Pleasurewood Hills.

One thing I do see now is that Pleasurewood and WMSP may get Drayton Manors cast off rides. Just like the way Flamingo Land gave some of there old rides to sister park Pleasure Island. Could see rides like Pandemonium at Pleasurewood in 10 years time, if it gets replaced.
 
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I personally think that the Pirates Adventure building could host a very interesting attraction that I spotted on Zamperla's website. It is called the Factory Coaster and if you themed it to something related to Pirates Adventure with new theming items, this could be so underrated and the perfect indoor coaster for the UK. Yes, coasters are a long shot, but it marks the family thrill market Drayton Manor are going for.

 
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