Oh! We do like to be beside the seaside!
We do like to be beside the sea!
Oh we do like to stroll along Towers Street!
Where the brass bands play, “Tiddely-reet-teet-teet!”
But not in 2006 you didn’t have to choose, when Alton Towers brought the seaside to the park for the summer months with The Great British Bucket and Spade Event.
The centrepiece of the event was a giant Towers Sandcastle, standing proud on the centre island of Towers Street. Further down the street the lower island was transformed into the park’s beach, complete with Towers’ brand stripy deckchairs alongside a volley ball court and other beach games.
A multitude of characters roamed the area, including Aussie lifeguards, making sure guests were following the beach rules, and Victorian beach-goers, who were making the most of the Great British seaside. A squad of super-soaker armed Warriors roamed the area, providing guests with a much needed soaking, and the was even a pair of Merfolk riding around the event on dolphin segways. Traditional seaside entertainment was provided by a Punch and Judy show, with a less traditional giant inflatable whale also beaching itself on the volleyball court for some of the event. Guests could venture inside the whale to take part in an interactive kids show.
During the event, selected rides would open into the evening and as the day came to an end, live bands would take to a bandstand by the beach to serenade guests as they headed to the monorail. And, for those who wanted to take the event home with them, there was a competition to win the park’s beach hut.
Even after guests had left the park, they could take their bucket and spade over to the Alton Towers Hotel, which had its own beach. Each evening a jazz band would play by the hotel beach followed by a special cabaret show, which took place in the hotel later in the evening.
Whilst the event only ran for a single season, the next year (and many years after) the distinctive stripy deckchairs from the event would grace the front lawns, whilst eagle-eye Skyriders could spot the Towers Sandcastle tucked away behind Ug Land.