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Lightwater Valley, New rides in 2011 (see page 7)


Goon of the Year
Taken from Nathan at Valley Mania:

Evening guys!

We've been pretty manic these past few days with speculation, rumours and Chinese whispers over Lightwater Valley's plans for the 2011 season, but now is the time to put you all out of your misery!

I can confirm that Lightwater Valley will be home to a new rollercoaster come next season. After considering a number of different options, the park have settled on a Vekoma Whirlwind. Formerly located at Särkänniemi Amusement Park in Finland, Korkkiruuvi (that's Finnish for Corkscrew) closed in 2009 and has been on the market ever since.

As far as I'm aware, a deal hasn't quite been tied up yet, but I understand it will cost in the region of £900,000 (including shipping). Members of park management are heading off to Fort Fun shortly to try out Speed Snake - one of six Whirlwinds still operating. Should the deal go through, the ride will stand on the current Grand Prix Go Karts site - which will be leaving the park.

My POV from last year:


Social Media Team
Social Media Team
Oh, great. That'll REALLY help them be competitive, a ride type everyone else is getting rid of...


Mountain monkey
Staff member
Social Media Team
Haha, it's Loopen, with two screws instead of a loop and a screw!

Okay, based on one ride of Loopen, I can tell you how the experience is:

Noisy lift hill - lame "drop" - headbang entering the screw, lame turn - repeat step 3 and 4 - violent brakes.

However, it has a throughput like there's no tomorrow. Should keep the queues down in the rest of the park, at least the first week. Could potentially draw more customers too.

To be honest, I'm more excited about what will take Korkkiruuvi's place in Särkäniemmi.

Martyn B

Well-Known Member
This is their 3rd new ride in 3 years, so at least they're trying to improve the place.

And I'm actually pleased for them. There are so many small coasters like this for sale, that our small parks could really do with. They ain't exactly exciting, I know, but its something extra to do at the park. Its another ride, another coaster, and an inverting one, which should help the park,

I hope they put the effort into to making it look good too. Take the temporary feel away from it.

Mackem Lad

^Well it's nice to see that someone has a little perspective on things. :)

Besides, this won't be the only new addition for 2011.

Martyn B

Well-Known Member
One thing though, they actually buying this yeah? So it will be there for more than one season? :lol:


New Member
I have a few mixed thoughts about this, but firstly, for that price, of course it's worth it! Bear in mind that WRR cost around £500 K so for just £400 K more, they have got a coaster, and it will certainly be a fantastic draw to the park. Certainly much more than any other flat ride, water ride or whatever would be.

It's also a looper, and corkscrews are always fun inversions and they are eye-catching elements too. It's also from Vekoma, so reliable, cheap and sturdy it sure will be! They can also look quite attractive too, just look at Bocaraca in Costa Rica, it has a nice eye-catching paint job! Hopefully this will follow suite! :)

But just to be realistic, it's not the best coaster out there. This ride kind of looks like a worse version of Corkscrew. At least with that there is some airtime offer on the first drop, where as here it is just a swooping drop.

However that aside, it will no doubt be a good investment for the park. It's a good, solid ride and dare I say, it could become that first looper for many of today's little ones, making it just as memorable as Corkscrew has been for most of us! :)

Just think, WHIRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR will soon be a familiar sound in the valley! :lol:

How long until the farmers complain? :tehe:


Well-Known Member
No, it's not the most exciting coaster in the world. However, it is at least a coaster (and more importantly, a cred for me! haha). OK, so I've been on things very similar, but it will be a new ride type for me, which in itself is fairly exciting. It's also about time they had an inverting coaster back at the park.

Will it make me rush back to the park? In itself, no. However, it will give me more incentive to return to a park which I've started to find a bit stale and boring (and I've only been twice!). Once I've ridden it once, it's not going to make me want to travel all the way back up there to re-ride it, but it will probably be enough to drag me back up there once.

I think part of the problem with LWV is that they can't figure out who their target audience are. With FL just up the road doing a reasonable job of catering to the older teen/more thrill-seeker market (it's also unfortunate that FL is also home to this ride's nearest relative in the UK).... what do you get at LWV? Apart from T'Ultimate, it's pretty much all kiddy stuff. Yes, this is a pretty good family coaster, or first inversion (much as Corky at Alton was... which, afterall, was my first inverting coaster), but in a family with kids of different ages, it's not going to keep the older ones entertained for long. I almost feel that LWV would do better to go down the young family route (think Paultons), but then, T'Ultimate would be out of place.

T'Ultimate is one of my favourite coasters, but that alone is not enough to keep me coming back to the park year after year. And I'm sure I'm not the only one who thinks that. This new addition will make me visit once to get the cred... but after that, the park is back to being a one trick pony.


Well-Known Member
Its not as bad as it could have been and it is good they are getting something else. Yes its an old ride but it will be the parks first coaster that inverts.

I have yet to go on a layout like this so its new for me and as Nic said its a new credit which tbh in the UK this could be the only new one next year!

I still think a ride like Lynet would be perfect for the park, but yes they are expensive and the park simply are not in that position.

Would it make me go back to the park, well yes tbh as I have not done the Rat since the re theme and I was not just going back for that.

So if I go back next year I will have the Rat, this and the Top Scan.


Well-Known Member
Lets just face the facts, this park doesn't know what on earth it's doing and limited funds cause them to purchase quick fixes. The park is never going to be anything and it's a bloody shame that it's home to the Ultimate.


Active Member
For me, this ride is a box ticker, like Corkscrew at FL. It's there, so I'll do it, but if I can't, then I'm not going to be sad about it. It's nice that they're trying to add new rides, but their problem is that none of their rides seem to have any great effort put in to make them memorable. Their new topscan is actually a brilliant ride. Great forces and quite an intense feeling setting, but essentially it's a fairground ride plonked on a bit of grass next to Eagle's Claw, which is exactly the same thing. It's almost like the ride isn't supposed to be there.

Then there's Raptor Attack. I think they did a very good job with creating a build up of intensity in the queueline, the sort of detail level I'd expect at a half decent theme park. Then I got into the ride and they introduced the raptors which were just animatronics lit up at various points in the circuit. I'll admit it's difficult to theme an indoor rollercoaster, but it feels like they we're on a roll with the queue theming and then thought "the ride? Sod it, it's called raptor attack, just put raptors randomly."


Staff member
It's an odd choice going for such an "old style" coaster - but I reckon it looks really interesting. It's a curious layout...

It's another coaster to their line-up too and at least it's not a Pinfari. Any addition within their budget is a good addition.


New Member
I think it's unfair to label this ride as a "quick fix" or Lightwater as not knowing what they are doing.

Firstly the park has very limited funds when compared to the other parks in the country, so a new ride is a big risk for them, hence the rental attractions in the past few years.

As for this coaster, like others have said, it may not be the most exciting addition but it is at least a new addition and a new style of ride for the park. Fans and public have been asking for an inverting coaster for years, and the park has listened. It may be an old ride, but considering the budget the alternatives wouldn't have been anywhere near as good, at least with this they are getting a permanent(ish) ride, and not a funfair style coaster, that could've easily been on the cards.