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Staff member
Social Media Team
O.k, wow... If there's a proper board of directors at BPB, they should probably consider insisting that she run her social posts by somebody trained in PR before posting. She's coming across terribly.
This is Mandy Twitter 101. I swear this happens all the time. She's mad.


Mega Poster
She manages to keep herself in line most of the time but now and again she likes to write some really ridiculous stuff.
Some of it really shows how things work at BPB - Sometimes things are changed, and she'll go on twitter and write how she doesnt like it. Like, seriously, maybe be more involved with your teams work and make the changes internally?!


Staff member
Social Media Team
The only thing as certain as enthusiasts continuing to go to Blackpool for opening weekend when it's a 100% certainty that it's going to be a s**tshow is Amanda Thompson continuing to be an iconic queen.

Nicky Borrill

Strata Poster
The only thing as certain as enthusiasts continuing to go to Blackpool for opening weekend when it's a 100% certainty that it's going to be a s**tshow is Amanda Thompson continuing to be an iconic queen.
🤣 has iconic taken on a new meaning, since Icon turned out to be so disappointing to so many?


Hyper Poster
Icon vs Icon

For one more night, tonight the Icon Sting will seek to forever keep prestige to the title. A retirement and moniker done right 🤞

He also suffered from bad booking and choices at times but bounced back better than Ensõ.

I found crow Sting in the late nineties, channel surfing no less, with more fingers and toes than credits. Fast forward a decade and with one swift visit to Blackpool's Pleasure Beach I near double my count with many fond memories and strong happy opinions. Both were launching pads for different interests.

So many early mornings/late nights, air miles and train wines later it's been a long ride. Both sides a little run down but only one proud, respectable and living up to the memory. One evolved to an Icon, the other sank into a crap shoot trying to buy the name with no clue.

WTF Blackpool - what happened to you?

The only thing that's for sure, be it on Revolution or someone's maddening conduct online - nothings for sure. And it's show time.


Mega Poster
BPB/PBR/PBL or whatever is chooses to call itself these days seems to be suffering from an identity crisis. They have built up a well known brand that is recognised outside the UK, yet for reasons that remain unknown, are messing about with it every few years and making a complete mess of it each time. The mixture of merchandise available at the weekend was laughable.

The MD is also unprofessional, and down right rude. How dare anyone refer to a ride by what the park have called it for over 20 years? What's next, should we refer to the signature ride in Nick Land as the Velvet Coaster, or the SLC as TraumaTizer? I mean come on?

Clearly the park got caught out with something regarding the Big One, these things happen, but for so many rides to go down as well is simply bad preparation. I have found a lot in recent years they don't seem to run the rides in enough in the weeks leading up to opening, often resulting in slower than usual rides on some coasters.

Regarding the Grand Prix, yes it's only a car ride and it's hardly anyones favourite, but it's a park classic and a little bit of advanced warning about its closure would have been nice. I mean seriously, could this thing not run until a decision is made on what it's replacement will be and it becomes physically in the way of construction, as per the Log Flume/Infusion?

As for IceBla...er sorry PlayStation: The Ride, I guess Amanda could be telling the truth, but I find it hard to believe anything she says after the last few years, I'm still waiting for these exciting developments that will replace the Wild Mouse, but from what I have seen I wi be amazed if it runs again.


Mega Poster
It just feels like the place is run with no proper communications between departments, teams, or between people like Amanda who doesnt even know half of what's going on and objects when she finds out.
Contrast that to a recent interview on YouTube with a well-known coaster content creator, where a senior figure from Alton Towers says that she walked the park as a guest, stood in the main queues for rides, and rode each ride, seeing it from a guest perspective, Amanda opens the park, resides in the Arena, and isn't seen on park checking anything in terms of standards from one month to another. Its such a shame because it was once a great park and could be again with proper direction.

They need to find some way of bringing life pack to the park, and getting extra revenue at the same time. A starting point would be setting up a small breakfast offering on the Trauma Towers area. I'm talking sausage/bacon/fried egg butties, easy, fast and viable. It only has to open for the first couple of hours too, so wouldn't cost a fortune to run. The amount of people who go to Maccys or spoons because there is no other option is evidence demand is there, so why just sit back and watch that money be spent elsewhere? If it works, offer more of a menu at WB beans and open it longer, even before the park opens.

Also, a two-level cafe/bar could be built on the Mouse site, maybe called the Roller coaster tribute cafe, with pictures of all the coasters that have ever operated and a small bit of history about each ride. To bring some colour back to the area, it could be styled around the former Roller Coaster Station, maybe using the old light up sign if they still have it, and a mouse car outside for photo opportunities. It only needs to sell smaller options nothing too fancy, but indoor seating would sell itself a lot of days, and I'm sure most coaster buffs would want a pint and a look at the internal decor.

A longer term project would be the demolition of the dome, make the area safe of public access, and install a massive food court in the area. Again it's under cover, and in a prime location. Several quick service options available, a couple of curries, Jacket potatoes, wraps and filled Yorkshire puddings, again can be prepared in bulk and served throughout the day, and massively increasing the food range on offer across the park.
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Mega Poster
Good that the Big One has opened, is Iceblast looking any different?

Can I also just bring up the E-tickets at this point. I read somewhere else that they use this data to determine which rides are popular. For me, that's a highly inaccurate way to do it. Let's look at Steeplechase for example, its capacity is poor, and its not guaranteed to be on 3 lanes, so once the queue is back to the scanner the rate people go through the turnstile is probably 4 every couple of minutes, maybe 6 if it's using all 3 lanes and everyone doubles up the horses.

You would look at that data and determine it not popular, what you dont know without getting off one's backside and wondering round the park several times a day is that the back of the queue to scan onto the ride is somewhere towards the Burger King.

The same can probably be said for plenty of other rides.


Hyper Poster
You don’t need turnstiles to determine how popular a ride is.
They are remnants of the „free to enter“ time, and don’t make any sense with their current policy. If I can only enter the park with a fully paid ticket, I shouldn’t need to keep it close to ride anything. I already paid to enter.

If you want to see how popular a ride is, just look at the average queue time or ask the staff. The average queue is actually the best way, as it shows how long people are willing to wait for it - which is exactly what you want to know.

Many other parks also use scanners instead of turnstiles to determine the number of riders. Smaller park tend to do it with the oldschool clicker, but larger ones mostly switched to the former method. But number of riders != popularity. An unpopular darkride might have more riders than your main attraction, if it has a significantly higher capacity. But linking those scanners with the ride computer (to determine the real capacity it’s running at) shouldn’t be an issue nowadays.


Mega Poster
My original reasoning behind questioning the way they measure popularity is, back in the day, when the National dispatched a pair of trains every two and a half minutes when on a 4 train service, would have up to 48 people per race, or 96 riders on it at any given time, don't forget the trains were a car longer back then.

I haven't actually worked this out, but I bet it works out that when it was manually operated it used to carry around 1500 per hour. Now Kumbak have messed the loading procedure up, we have shorter trains which take longer to park, load and cease shuffling at the end of the ride, 4 train operation is not only rare, its almost pointless, and the overall line moves a lot slower. I'd guess today it gets through less than half the number of punters, maybe 600 per hour?

My concern with the way BPB/PBR/PBL seem to view things is thats a significant drop in popularity, when in actual fact the ride remains popular, it just has such a bizarre way of running the ride cant get people through like it used to, and the stats from the turnstiles won't tell the whole story.

The same can be said for most rides, the Avalanche used to run 3 trains, the Roller Coaster, or Streak as some of you call it used to run 2. The current numbers going through will be a far cry from what they used to be, but those rides are as popular, in the Streaks case more popular than they were in the 80's and 90's.


Mega Poster
Just a couple of things:

Amanda I feel needs to really improve her PR skills. Even if she is frustrated by fans, they are ultimately the one lining her pockets. The passholders are the ones who come every weekend and spend £16 per head on a crappy pizza buffet. I think perhaps she should tweet less, and try and improve her image. I think opening weekend sounds like a disaster as well, The "hey we are going to test cycle with one group" on Infusion as stupid. Big One and Ice Blast being closed is not good, but it seems that was one of many problems.

I enjoyed Pleasure Beach when I last visited, I think it is better than Alton. Actually I would chose to visit over Alton due to the park layout not being awful. I do think Amanda needs to put a lid on her Twitter rants and maybe next year they can open a little later to not repeat opening weekend 2024.

The E-Scan/Turnstiles were a major problem for me when I visited. It made sense when it was free to walk around, but now it is a pay per admission park, it just gets annoying having to whip your phone every-time you wanna ride something. My phone battery barely lasted the day, and it was annoying that i had to constantly reach for my phone. You can gauge popularity by queue times/vs throughput right? Why make your consumer scan a QR code every two seconds for no reason?


Mega Poster
I do agree that the E-Scan system is a bit pointless and frustrating, especially when other parks don't do it.

I visited on Sunday and actually had a really good day (despite the dull weather). Operations were fast on most coasters even though the majority were 1 train operations. The Big One was only running with one train, and that train only had 3/5 carriages being filled, with the back two out of order.

I was wondering if those trains were part of the reason for it not being open last weekend.

Apart from that, I had a pretty fun day! Perhaps I was just lucky with the low crowds however 👀


Mega Poster
I actually love BPB, and the Grand National remains my favourite wooden coaster in the country, infact its my favourite full stop, and I have a lot of time for pretty much every ride there.

The problems for me come from how the park has been operated for the last 25 years or thereabouts, and they stem from opening times being ridiculously short, night rides being almost impossible to get, even when they do so called late night events, it's often not dark by the time the close and when it is, the only coaster still in operation till the end is the National, which means its usually got a 45-60minute wait and is only running 2 trains usually.

Add to that the dwindling capacity park-wide, the slow service at catering units, the lack of atmosphere and the blatant ignorance to long problems that have been around for many years, the Grand National lap bars hurting people as well as its trains being too heavy for the track and it's overall poor throughput and reliability, Streak/Avalanche/Steeplechase having a lower capacity than what they should, and far too many rides being lost with no replacement, Black Hole, AstroSwirl, Cableway, Wate Chute, Space Invader, Monorail, Wild Mouse, Trauma Towers.....