Clarence Pier gets taste of the High Life


Innovative Leisure, the UK based interactive family attractions specialist, has completed the installation of two new major high ropes adventure courses at venues quite literally at either end of the UK.

Clarence Pier, in Southsea, Portsmouth, on the south coast of England, and Codona’s Amusement Park in Aberdeen in Scotland, have both added a major high ropes course for the 2011 season as they seek to bring yet more family fun and entertainment – and something different – to their facilities.

At Clarence Pier, the 14m x 14m structure – which is visible across the Solent from the Isle of Wight – has been built on the corner of the pier to allow access from the nearby street area and directly from the pier itself. The double level, eight pole high ropes course incorporates a unique walk the plank feature and pirate theming, making it an ideal fit with the coastal location, and rises to 15m above the ground/sea, including the theming.

The new course has been named Pier Pressure – Rise to the Challenge and is large enough to cater for up to 150 guests per hour, with 35 participants able to enjoy the experience at any one time. Offering 28 different elements, it is themed with natural colours, specially stained hand carved wood effects, hessian ropes and pirate theming on the second level, which offers a more challenging experience than the level below.

“It is totally and utterly unique,” commented Clarence Pier’s Jill Norman. “We are a relatively small operator compared to some of the larger parks so were looking for something different and decided to add a high ropes course. It’s aimed at anyone over five years old and we hope it will bring in a different market that possibly wouldn’t go on the more traditional amusement rides. We are also aiming it at the corporate market and will be offering corporate packages featuring the high ropes course, with team building days combined with our conference facilities.

“A unique feature is the walk the plank element which takes visitors over the edge of the pier about 10m up and fits perfectly with the pirate theme. One thing that particularly appealed to us was that other high ropes courses don’t provide the facility for participants to overtake each other, which is unique to the Innovative Leisure courses. The service we received from Innovative Leisure was first class too, with everything completed on time as promised, despite the snow in December.”

In Scotland, at Codona’s Amusement Park, a six pole, triple level high ropes course has been installed alongside the Log Flume ride. With an impressive maximum height of 14m and a capacity of 35 people at any one time, the attraction is believed to be the only three level high ropes course in the UK and is particularly aimed at providing additional thrills for the teen market, although the lower levels cater perfectly for younger or less confident guests.

“We liked the concept of adding something totally different to our park that can still be enjoyed by almost any age group,” commented Alfred Codona. “Having decided to go for three levels on the attraction we are pitching the marketing more towards the teenage/extreme market. However, we will be making it very clear to the public that they do not have to complete all three levels and that they only need to climb as high as they are comfortable with.

“We have sited the high ropes course in the centre of the park, taking advantage of the open floor space below it to house our photo shop and side stalls. It will open with our outdoor amusement park on April 1st., 2011. And Innovative leisure were great to deal with and comfortably made all the deadlines set at the start of the contract, as well as organising the design review and ADIPS certification which were completed just a few days after the inspection on site.”

“Our major high ropes courses are creating a lot of interest among operators of a wide range of attraction venues and we are very happy with these two latest installations,” said Innovative Leisure MD Phil Pickersgill. “They are both very impressive structures offering an exciting and challenging experience for all ages and I’m sure will be popular additions at both venues.”

The new Sky Trail is one of a range of major high ropes courses offered by Innovative Leisure, which distributes the attractions in the UK on behalf of US manufacturer Ropes Courses, Inc., who have completed over 600 courses in the US. Hourly capacities of up to 500 people and one, two, three or four levels are possible, while the many different elements incorporated into the attractions are interchangeable, so that the courses can be altered at regular intervals to refresh, update or further develop where required. Full theming options are also available, such as pirate, jungle and construction themes.

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