News release Ref: Date Contact Tel. DMTP0811 16/03/2015 Laura Quigley, Sarah Taylor, Sam Wright or Michelle Ivins 01527 579555 Client: Drayton Manor Theme Park Date drafted: 16th March 2015 Copy Ref: DMTP0811 Drafted by: SW/MI M Ivins Date: Approval sign off: Director approval: Client approval: Date: TOOT TOOT - ALL ABOARD FOR THE LAUNCH OF THE EXPANDED THOMAS LAND™ ATTRACTION AS IT OFFICIALLY OPENS 8th APRIL 2015 This Easter, visitors will be ready to ‘Toot Toot’ in celebration as Drayton Manor Theme Park officially opens its doors to the newly expanded Thomas Land attraction on Wednesday 8th April 2015. After undergoing a huge £2.5million expansion that will see the attraction be bigger and better than ever, Thomas & Friends™ enthusiasts will come face to face with new characters with the introduction of Flynn the Fire Engine, who is equipped with on-board hoses so riders can help to put any fires out, and Captain’s Sea Adventure, which introduces not one, but six rotating Captain lifeboat carriages, all complete with their own cannons to squirt water. The exciting new Thomas Land will also see the arrival of the brand new two-storey Sodor Airport. In a traditional terminal style it has a top level balcony for VIP ‘travellers’ with notto-be-missed views of Thomas Land. The area has five themed rooms that will be available for private hire for events from this summer. These rooms are ideal for parties or large family groups looking to make their day out extra special! The ground level will feature a café for guests to relax and enjoy a selection of hot and cold drinks and snacks before they depart for their Thomas Land adventure. Jeremy Jet’s Flying Academy will also be landing in its new location outside Sodor Airport, ready to take passengers on their flight over Sodor. The park will begin the celebrations of its 65th Anniversary this Easter and will mark the start of an action packed season, with many events and commemorative activities taking place each month. The park also boasts some of the biggest, wettest and scariest rides around including white-knuckle thrill rides such as the adrenaline-inducing drop-tower, Apocalypse, which was voted the UK’s scariest ride by Channel 5’s ‘The Gadget Show’, Europe’s only standup coaster, Shockwave, the stomach-churning gyro-swing, Maelstrom and the newest offering, the acrobatic aeroplane flight, Air Race. There’s also the Ben 10: Ultimate Mission rollercoaster and the 15-acre zoo, which is home to over 100 species of animals from all around the world. Not to mention the 4D cinema, which features special simulations that go along with this year’s 4D film, Yogi Bear, to create an interactive experience for all. Colin Bryan, CEO of Drayton Manor Theme Park, said; “Our Thomas Land attraction really brings the magical island of Sodor to life, which is something all real Thomas fans love about coming to Drayton Manor. We’re really excited to get the gates open and start making some ever lasting memories for other families – just as the theme park has done for our family. “The opening is testament to the hard working team we have at the park. As a family, we are always looking to go above and beyond to make sure every season is better than the last for our visitors. “We will continue to provide an affordable day out that the whole family can enjoy and we’re hoping to see everyone leave the attraction with a beaming smile on their face.” Visitors travelling from further afield can enjoy a night at the four-star Drayton Manor Hotel, which has 150 bedrooms, including 15 Thomas & Friends™ themed family rooms. To find out more information, www.draytonmanorhotel.co.uk. or to book a stay, please visit The hotel also has two bars and restaurants and is located near to the theme park’s on-site restaurant, The Grill Inn, which is open to non- visitors and visitors ensuring people are never stuck for a choice of fine food and drink. Opening hours can be found at www.thegrillinn.co.uk. The 2015 season runs from Saturday 21st March until Sunday 1st November, with the 65th Firework Spectacular happening the weekend of 31st October. The park will also open its gates for their award-winning Magical Christmas experience on selected dates from Saturday 21st November to Thursday 31st December. Please note: the park will be closed to the general public on Sunday 13th September. For further information about Drayton Manor Theme Park or to pre-book discounted entry tickets visit www.draytonmanor.co.uk or call 0844 472 1960. For regular updates and news about Drayton Manor Theme Park join us on Twitter www.twitter.com/Draytonmanor and Facebook www.facebook.com/Draytonmanorpark. -ENDS- Notes to Editor About Drayton Manor Drayton Manor Theme Park Ltd, opened to the public in 1950 by the Bryan family, is one of the UK’s most popular family attractions with over one million visitors a year. George and Vera Bryan OBE, converted 80 acres of derelict land, which once belonged to Sir Robert Peel Bart; MP & PM to Queen Victoria and his family, into today’s wonderful multi award-winning family attraction, combining thrill rides with a conservation zoo plus catering and conference facilities. Today, Drayton Manor Theme Park, still family owned and run by second and third generation family members, covers 286 acres of beautiful woodland and countryside and features some of the wildest and scariest rides around. Rides include: Roller-Coasters Shockwave, Ben 10: Ultimate Mission and G-force. Major rides: Maelstrom, Apocalypse and Storm Force 10, our wettest ride. It is home to the hugely popular Thomas Land™ featuring many named Thomas & Friends™ character rides for the children and adults alike. Thomas Land™ at Drayton Manor is the only one of its kind in Europe. The park’s 152 seat 4D Cinema and over 50 rides and attractions makes for a truly unforgettable day. A four-star Hotel onsite featuring 150 rooms includes Thomas & Friends™ themed rooms all sleeping four to six guests, family rooms, executive rooms and presidential suites. It also features two well stocked bars, two sublime restaurants, a relaxing lounge, large conference room for functions and exhibitions as well as an idyllic wedding facility for up to 400 guests. A popular Grill Inn Steak Restaurant and bar adjacent to the hotel which seats up to 150 guests is open all year round. www.draytonmanor.co.uk www.draytonmanorhotel.co.uk www.thegrillinn.co.uk www.draytonmanorevents.co.uk About HIT Entertainment HIT Entertainment is one of the world's leading preschool entertainment companies, specializing in building powerful brands based on engaging stories. HIT Entertainment’s world-class portfolio includes Thomas & Friends®, Mike the Knight™, Fireman Sam®, Bob the Builder, Barney®, Angelina Ballerina®, Pingu® and Rainbow Magic®. HIT Entertainment excels at creating and building globally successful brands which capture the hearts and imaginations of preschoolers and their families. This is achieved through exceptional storytelling in multiple formats, enhanced by creating high quality character-based products and experiences with best-in-class partners. HIT Entertainment’s lines of business span television and home entertainment production, content distribution, digital media, publishing, consumer products and live events and attractions. HIT Entertainment is a subsidiary of Mattel, Inc. and has operations in the UK, US, Canada, Hong Kong and Japan. For more information visit www.hitentertainment.com About Thomas & Friends™ Thomas the Tank Engine was created by a father for his son 69 years ago and today is enjoyed by families in more than 185 territories and in 30 languages. The #1 blue engine and his friends invite children to enter a world of imagination through the tracks of a train and the words of a story. Children embark on adventures with their engine friends while experiencing timeless life lessons of discovery, friendship and cooperation. Thomas & Friends makes tracks to great destinations on PBS KIDS®, Sprout® and on Five’s Milkshake! and Nick Jr in the UK and on CCTV in China. Downloadable episodes are available through iTunes. For more information about the world of Thomas the Tank Engine™ and his friends, please visit www.thomasandfriends.com.
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