Flamingo Land: General Discussion

Discussion in 'European Parks and Attractions' started by soundwave96, 13th Jun 2012.

  1. Dave

    Dave TS Founding Member

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    Vekoma cable launches can't hammer throughputs as they take ages to charge their accumulators but Flamingo land will never push theirs as their operations are terrible.
     
  2. Harv

    Harv TowersStreet Member

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    Seems to have slipped under the radar a little but Flamingo Land had a Halloween night last night. There were a few rides open at dusk (Hero and Velocity to name two), and some live entertainment. Most importantly, it was free entry which seemed pretty good to me. I didn't go unfortunately but you can find plenty of pictures knocking around and it looked pretty good.

    Wave Swinger has been removed, it appears. Apparently it's on the old Corkscrew site, awaiting removal from the park.

    [​IMG]

    Credit to FlamingoPics for the image, obviously.

    It's been replaced by that tacky, creepy clown thing. I hope sincerely this is temporary. An already shoddy entrance now looks to be a complete joke, if this stays here. However, no news on anything new for 2014 so perhaps a new ride in Metropolis...?
     
  3. Slugjc

    Slugjc TowersStreet Member

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    As a very proud Yorkshireman (tha no's) Ive always bit never really wanted to go to FL. This is 3 years ago now I went for a birthday trip and discovered............................... that the place was a disgrace. Full of riff raff. Toilets were not clean, although I was impressed with the rides. The design staff and look of them reminded me of the abandoned park in Chernobyl. The place should cut its loses and just focus on the zoo now.
     
  4. jenniferelka

    jenniferelka TowersStreet Member

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    Yep, I do have to say that Flamingo Land just disappoints me a bit now, which is a shame. Living in the north east it is the most common theme park choice for people I know to go and every time I turn on the local news there's a million adverts for the place but, I have to say nowadays I rarely visit compared to past years. It's a nice place and a nice day out but I don't feel I can justify the money anymore. That being said though, for a family with kids it's great little place.
     
  5. Bear

    Bear TowersStreet Member

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    Having worked in a field adjacent to the park all this week (if you looked right at the top of Mumbo Jumbo, you will have seen me zipping around in one of these [​IMG] ) it has seemed extremely quiet. I only saw Cliffhanger and Kumali run a couple of times. It's the summer holidays, what gives?
     
  6. Sam

    Sam TowersStreet Member

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    I hope the park goes bankrupt.
     
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  7. Bear

    Bear TowersStreet Member

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    Apparently Gordon Gibb has left his wife Victoria, who made arguably the worst decisions for the park to date and carelessly spent money on tat. Who knows, things may start to improve.
     
  8. NF2

    NF2 TowersStreet Member

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    Surely they receive complaints about the poor operations and staff. I last visited in 2008, once again a summer holiday, and all the same problems occurred then that occur now.

    What really bugs me is that somewhere in the management there is absolutely no drive to improve, they seem to be oblivious to the fact that their operations and customer service are nothing short of appalling. They showed promise as a park around the time Kumali opened, though right now if the current management continue like this then in my eyes it is a park that's in a rapid downward spiral. :(
     
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  9. Slugjc

    Slugjc TowersStreet Member

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    the place doesn't need that much of an investment. The zoo part was fine looks new and well done. The park needs a john wardley chessington type of bloke who can come in tidy up improve look of rides, and try and get some dignity back. Years ago people in my area woul go there annually now its not at all people would rather go south to Alton, or just drive past all together and go to scarbourgh
     
  10. Bear

    Bear TowersStreet Member

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    Up until 2008 when I went to Towers for the first time, I thought queueing 3-4 hours for a ride during the summer was normal. The people that go there probably don't know better and just deal with it.
     
  11. Ian

    Ian TS Site Team Team Member

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    The park is in dire need of improvement, but as a couple of people have said there are a lot of changes they could make at low cost to them in order to improve the look and feel of the park.

    The biggest has to be some new staff training. There never seems to be any push to get queues moving or to interact with guests, and for me it really does drag down the image if the place. Maybe do like some other parks do and offer incentives for attractions performing the best with their throughput and alike. People hate queuing, and I always think that part of good customer service at any park is trying to keep wait times as low as possible.

    As for appearance even just the odd coat of paint and a few planters, etc would make some difference. The park feels so barren and concrete it's unreal.

    In the long run though the park desperately needs to look at its long-term sustainability. It can't go on like this for ever :confused1:
     
    Last edited: 29th Jul 2014
  12. Rollercoasters4Life

    Rollercoasters4Life TowersStreet Member

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    Having only visited Flamingo Land for the first time last year I was quiet happy with the place. I mainly went as my missus had been when she was 14 with her family in 2005 so thought I would go to see what it was like. We did two days on the park and it was a nice little family orientated theme park and the zoo was great too. My only problem is the lack of staff morale/training and the need for some decent eateries around the park.

    We went back again this year during the same time (July) and a bit has changed towards the back of the park and it has opened up the accommodation bit into the park. The throughputs and staff are dire still though. The staff just don't seem energetic or willing to help speed things up or make sure you have a nice day. What is it with not loading the bays on the rides? Kumali and Velocity never get their bays loaded while the train is out on track which could speed things up a little. It so bad that the staff actually sit down on Kumali as there is a chair near the back, exit side of the station to where that member of staff sits. Is it company guidelines not to load the bays? Or is it done to make the queue appear longer so people by the Q buster thing?

    Another thing is they are just so slow at loading the ride vehicles and dispatching. Kumali must be one of the worst. I know they have problems with the restraints sticking down but there is no need for the double check that they do. Once a train comes back in they go along the rows pressing the restraints and then the operator finally opens them. It might not seem like much time but in the long run it adds a lot of time to the guests waiting. If a restraint gets stuck all they need to do is go to it and push it down and it pops open - on the odd time this doesn't work they have the machines on the wooden fence to open the restraints (which doesn't happen often I wouldn't of thought).

    Another problem is the place lacks nice eateries. One day we had from the place in the housing to the right of the main entrance and the food wasn't great and not enough seating - the next day we had from a Pizza Pie place near the stage next to Mumbo Jumbo. Even that was an effort. There were three staff on and all of them were foreign. Now I have no problem with this, unless they can't understand what customers want or can't communicate fluently enough between the customer or each other. One was doing the pizzas in the back, another one serving and the other doing the other items they serve like Chicken Wings and Strips, etc. Now the bloke asked what I wanted and I told him a 12" margherita Pizza and two waters - he said there would be a 15/20 minute wait on the pizzas and asked if it was ok. I reply yes and waited. During this time there were other people coming in asking for just single slices of pizza and no matter what topping they were told they had to wait the same 15/20 minutes. Now I am no expert in running a food business but they should at least have one full pizza of each kind (at least margherita, most popular) ready for when people want single slices, yet they didn't - bearing in mind this was during the lunch hours. There was an abundance of Chicken Wings (not once while I was there did anyone want Chicken Wings) in the hot plate and a few Chicken Stripes. Another bloke that had ordered before me ordered a 12" pizza and some Chicken Stripes. When he finally got his Pizza he asked for his Chicken Stripes and the bloke serving said sorry I have just given them all out and just stood there. The bloke got angry and in the end asked for a refund and left with just his pizza. Now, when my pizza came I asked the woman that brought it if we could have our waters that we ordered - she looked at me blank in the face and I once again repeated what I said, for her to look at me confused. In the end I had to ask the serving bloke for the waters to which he gave a puzzled look and I had to point to them.

    Now I don't know if Flamingo Land run that place or lease it out but it was a complete shambles. No organisation, just like some of the rides. Flamingo Land just need to sort out their eateries and staff and they should be OK. Another rollercoaster wouldn't go amiss either. Apart from what is outlined above its a nice park with a good zoo. Its great for families too, they just need to sort out their act.
     
    Last edited: 29th Jul 2014
  13. thefatone

    thefatone TowersStreet Member

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    It seems to be company guidelines to run awfully. They have no trust in their staff or their guests so they run everything "safe" (ie with no chance of anything happening - so ride is clear before you think of loading the trains etc). Think they're not allowed to load bays whilst the rides in motion otherwise the staff would obviously do it.

    They need a HUGE kick up the arse, but they obviously have completely incompetent managers and owners (the owner was sentenced for physically abusing a ticket tout last year). Shows the place is run awfully really.
     
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  14. Bear

    Bear TowersStreet Member

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    Went up to the park gates while out walking today and observed for a little while.

    The main, coach, and overflow car parks were all packed. However, looking at the park itself you'd think it was deserted. Kumali was running on 10-15min dispatches, Cliffhanger launched twice in around 25 minutes, Velocity had 2-3 launches in around the same time, I think there was maybe 4-5 Hero dispatches in that time too. Twistosaurus, Zooom, Lost River, and Mumbo Jumbo were either not running or dispatching so slowly that I missed it.

    I've frequented the place since 1996 and I have never known it be anything like this bad. But it got worse on seeing the on-the-gate cost to get in; £35. That's 5 hours and 24 minutes work at minimum wage, to admit 1 (one) person of 4 (four) years of age or older. Even the online price is £29. Wat.

    What can a 4 year old do at the place for £35? You'd get a show or two, a small zoo, a playground, and a handful of 20 year old kiddie flats, followed by some awful food served by people who either can't speak English, or won't speak at all! The fact they get away with charging this is utter madness. I sincerely hope the place goes belly-up before long. Everything looked so promising when they installed Velocity and Kumali, then before you know it there's Zamperla garbage springing up like zits on a tramp's backside. Such a shame.
     
  15. Martin

    Martin TowersStreet Member

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    Where DID it go wrong for them? Up until about 2010 it was looking so rosy, regular new, fairly unique and interesting coasters, then suddenly it's been like this for the last few years.
     
  16. Scott

    Scott Former TS Team Member

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    It's a huge shame - the park had so much potential! The solid additions, inclusion of theming, attempts to bring the park in line with bigger names in the country and then suddenly nothing.

    It's a catastrophic downturn if it truly is as bad as is being described. Mumbo Jumbo ain't a great ride but the park were trying good things when they put it in - they were breaking records! Now it's slowly becoming a Zamperla showroom.
     
  17. PeteA

    PeteA TowersStreet Member

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    Well I personally never have had a problem with Flamingoland and is in fact one of the places I look forward to visiting every year. It has rides for all the family, never really suffers from long queues and has continually invested every year.

    I mean its got 4 kiddie coasters... 4 of them. That's fantastic for kids.. How many does Alton have?

    As for the comments about the number of Zamperla rides, well it seems the park have a good relationship with them, so if they want to install a certain ride and Zamperla make it, then why not go with them? Some of the biggest parks / operators in the World buy many Zamperla rides for their parks *cough* Disney, so they cant be that bad. Indeed the number of Zamperla rides at Merlin operated attractions is on the increase. Whole areas of parks around the World are filled with their products.

    Riverside 1 is also a nice addition for 2014 and I am looking forward to seeing what 2015 holds.
     
  18. John

    John TowersStreet Member

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    My last visit to Mingo was last year and I have absolutely no desire to return any time soon - they may continuously invest but pretty much everything they add is mediocre at best, plus the operations are so bad it makes queuing an utter misery on all but the quietest of days. Nemesis probably gets through more people per hour than Mumbo Jumbo, Kumali, Velocity and Hero combined.
     
  19. Slugjc

    Slugjc TowersStreet Member

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    i love the phrase mingo land. Well done
    The place is on the way to Scarborough why cant it be amazing as AT it can have the through put no problem. It should put Yorkshire as a theme park heaven not a theme park hell. Get rid of the awful caravans. Improve the staff and look of the place. Get rid if the riff raff. Ta dar you've got Yorkshire premier attractions. (tin bath the ride as we Yorkshire people love laughing at people at people from Castleford)
     
  20. jenniferelka

    jenniferelka TowersStreet Member

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    The caravan holiday area does seem have a reputation for 'chavs' from what people I know have said. I think this may be a reason a lot of people I know don't consider staying there anymore. I know quite a few did a while back.

    A lot of people I know seem to view Flamingo Land as superior to Lightwater Valley, but whenever anyone mentions a theme park trip they forget about the place and straight away propose the towers, even without my persuasion. I just don't think it is viewed as a quality day out anymore by people, which is understandable, but then again I have mostly spoken to people in my age group about it.
     

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