Towers Loving Care

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Randomizer462, 21st Dec 2015.

  1. Enk27

    Enk27 TowersStreet Member

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    It sounds positive. Out of curiosity does anyone know is the new coffee shop is replacing Refresh by Ripshaw, wobbleworld cafe or a new location? Presumably it's not replacing coffee corner which seems to have more refurbs than the rest of the park put together.
     
  2. AstroDan

    AstroDan TS Forum Team Team Member

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    I reckon it will be either [email protected] or Fresh Fish & Chips?

    Wobble World would seem silly given the mooted ride closures up there.
     
  3. Enk27

    Enk27 TowersStreet Member

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    I forgot about Fresh Fish and Chips. That may make sense given Refresh is so close to the new restaurant - could Refresh be a new shop for "Air"?

    But yes putting a new coffee shop in cloud cuckoo may be a little odd. Hope they don't close the Cafe though, it makes better milkshakes than nitrogenie.
     
  4. IanB

    IanB TowersStreet Member

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    I wish I could be as optermistic as you Dan but it is rubbing off a little :)

    I think my biggest concern about the TLC is that Merlin seems to see it as a temporary thing. Its not just the next 3 years the park needs TLC, but it is a on-going process. I think that is the most frustrating thing I am taking away from this announcement. The worry they spend all this time improving things, only to let what was restored in 2016 start to look a little worse for wear come the end of the program.

    The Halloween event opening the first two weekends before being a full week also seems like a sensible idea.

    Hopefully these blogs will continue, and will provide more information about what is taking place to help build that confidence they are moving in the right direction.

    Ian
     
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  5. Ben

    Ben TS Founding Member

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    I know I should be pleased the park is getting some care, as it looks horrible. But that is entirely Merlins doing, I find is hilarious they make an announcement and want praise for doing the basics. I turned up to work this morning, shall I make a blog post about it?!

    I still don't think it will be much to get excited about anyway, probably a bit of paving replaced here and there and some more grey paint in DF. I'll bet that tunnel doesn't go anywhere!

    Thank you Dan, lord saviour of Alton Towers, apparently.
     
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  6. AstroDan

    AstroDan TS Forum Team Team Member

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    I didn't say that. But unlike most, I actually bothered to communicate my displeasure with Alton Towers and Merlin Entertainments.

    I am not one for sitting back and moaning on a forum - if you're proactive things change. Like Fanta on Oblivion. Like ride cuts a couple of years ago.

    Be proactive, and you get places. I wish more people would do it because in spite of what people like to think, Alton Towers usually respond.

    :)
     
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  7. James

    James TS Founding Member

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    Most of the time I've contacted Towers all I've ever got back is a standard letter mentioning how they take my comments on board, then followed by three paragraphs of how amazing their park is with over 50 rides and attr- yeah you get the idea.

    I suppose it depends who you contact or who reads what you say. The Guest Relations team got back to me personally this year asking me to speak to them more about my displeasure with hotel ents at Scarefest. So I guess it depends who's on the other end. It's hard for most to contact anyone important though as we don't have direct contact with park management or anyone noteworthy.

    I like the sound of this 'Towers Loving Care' plan, although I am too worried that this is simply seen as a temporary measure, what happens after 3 years? The park is left to fall apart again? I hope there's more to this than simple maintenance which they should be doing (and used to do many moons ago). I'm not going to get excited or be negative towards this for now, next season we'll get a better picture of what exactly is happening, but at least Towers can notice their own park is falling apart (took you years to notice but you got there).

    On the subject of the 'new attractions' next year, we all knew they would advertise Air as that, I think we can let them pass on that one. Food Loop is pretty unique, and it's an experience in itself, so I see no problem with that being marketed as a new attraction either. I see no problems here. Lets not forget when they tried advertising a council playground with a poo entrance as a new for 2007 attraction... things could be worse!

    The plans submitted for the changes to Air shown a new extension for a shop. Maybe Fish and Chips will become the coffee shop, and with Ripsaw rumored to be leaving the park maybe Refresh will be removed along with Ripsaw.
     
  8. delta79

    delta79 TowersStreet Member

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    The general public have been looking closer, and commenting on the state of the park. After the last day of the season I see why they are having to do maintenance to the park. And i think the 'Towers Loving Care' is more about getting back to standard then just general yearly maintenance to keep the standards up.
     
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  9. Benzin

    Benzin TowersStreet Member

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    Fact is that basic maintenance should be done as standard... I find it difficult to praise a park for fixing things that they're pretty much forced to replace because its rotted away, given places like Efteling seemingly add things (such as Baron getting queue line sheds this past month) with no fanfare...

    Given the refresh Scorpion Express got, I wouldn't be exactly thrilled by this... Comparing to DLPs stuff atm is strange, since there's no chance Towers will close Nemesis for a year for a substantial clean/adding new effects a la BTM... Indeed based on previous 'refurbs by Merlin', we end up with less theming than before...

    Towers are in a position of being unable to win because things have gotten so bad they need to make such a statement... Admitting the park is in a state is one thing, but maybe they shouldn't leave things to rot in the first place?
     
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  10. AstroDan

    AstroDan TS Forum Team Team Member

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    Of course they shouldn't leave it to get to this point in the first place - I doubt anybody would actually deny that. People on this forum (and others) have been saying that they do not look after existing rides, attractions nor infrastructure (including hotel rooms) anywhere near as well as they should do for years.

    The fact is - regardless of the rights or wrongs, much like DLP, the fact they have at least ackowledged that the park needs TLC is one thing.

    Better than that than the status quo!
     
    Last edited: 21st Dec 2015
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  11. Danza91

    Danza91 TowersStreet Member

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    Great news that action is being taken. The park should never have got to this state but at least now something is going to be done.
     
  12. LordOfDarkness

    LordOfDarkness TowersStreet Member

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    Is it only me who sees this as a short term thing?

    Like, we'll please them now and promise to do something whilst we cut back on the line up but then inevitably not deliver on the promises hoping they forget?
     
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  13. GaryH

    GaryH TowersStreet Member

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    This new coffee shop .... I wouldnt say that is a major new attraction, particularly when they can hardly keep the rest of the coffee shops or food outlets open at the best of times. And yes, given the hotel and entry prices the park shouldn't have got in such a state in the first place.

    While acknowledging they have to do something about it is good, forgive me if I still remain a little skeptical about just how much of a difference this will make. I will wait and see and hope we will see some major improvements..... however, part of me is just expecting a bit of paint touch up here and there and not much else.....
     
  14. PeteB

    PeteB TowersStreet Member

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    I always thought the forums were a good place to air our displeasure. After all, we've been reminded numerous times over the years to be careful what we say on forums, as usually, some one in some department ends up needing a tissue. It seems they do read the feedback and concerns discussed on sites like this. I know the marketing department are particularly sensitive to criticism. Bless their little cotton socks. :smirk:

    I've written to Towers 3 times over the years, and most recently a dear friend of mine did also. All fell on deaf ears and completely ignored.

    Well technically that's a little lie, the 2nd time I wrote (sometime around 2009) I received a letter acknowledging my complaint and that my feedback would be taken into consideration. This wasn't a human response, it was a standard template letter, printed and sent back. Needless to say, nothing else came of it after that.

    Does that mean you're giving up your seat at TST to become a full time 'anti merlin' campaigner then? :tearsofjoy:

    Anyway, there's an even better way to be proactive about things we don't like - simply not be active at all, as in not attend. If they want my custom, then they need to do something about it. Fingers crossed that they are, but naturally expectations are going to be low.
     
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  15. Spark

    Spark TowersStreet Member

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    I think the installation of this coffee shop is a sign of the times, it's currently massive in the real world and its good that Merlin are embracing this. Hopefully we will see this in FV replacing the awful chippy and will hopefully be themed along to Nemesis.
     
  16. GaryH

    GaryH TowersStreet Member

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    A coffee shop is massive in the real world? Really?

    They cant even keep the coffee shop they have open in Cred Street let alone a new one!!!
     
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  17. Rob

    Rob TS Forum Team Team Member

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    Some of the responses to this are quite amusing but not surprising. I understand why a lot of people are doubtful regarding this, Merlin don't exactly have a track record of such things. Having said that a fair amount has been spent at Chessington over the last couple of years on park asthetics etc and despite the awful ride line up the park itself has been looking good on my last couple of visits.

    Yes things like this should be standard for all theme parks. But we know it has not been at Alton Towers. Merlin rarely like to put any substantial money into projects that will not generate increased revenue. They're more than happy to invest in new rides or refurbished food and retail outlets as that has a direct impact on revenue. Refurbishment and upkeep has an indirect impact on revenue and Merlin don't tend to see this. It is quite a big deal that they have at last realised and are allowing a marketable scheme for it.

    Do I have confidence that this will be all done well? At the moment no I do not. I am sure things will look better in the short term but these improvements have to be done to last. That means not going for the cheapest materials and so on; "buy cheap, buy twice". Just look at Octonauts, it looked a state just a few months after opening. I also hope that if theming is done up and/or added that there is a good level of detail, often detail has been lost when things like this have been done.

    I think we should give Alton Towers a chance with this. It is a three year scheme so the park is not going to transform overnight. But a lot of people have been saying for a number of years that something like this is needed. The park is in a state that it should never have been allowed to enter and it is ultimately going to cost them more now to fix it.

    In regards to those saying they've contacted Towers in the past but got either no reply or just a standard reply, it all comes down to who you contact. Pretty much every time I have written to Towers or Merlin I have recieved a personal response from a senior member of staff. Address you letter to the divisional director and you will get a response from the right person. If you just go via guest servies you probably will get a repsonse full of standard paragraphs, lots of customer service departments do this.

    :)
     
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  18. AstroDan

    AstroDan TS Forum Team Team Member

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    No, no and no.

    Writing to Joe Bloggs at Guest Services won't get you anywhere.

    If you try hard enough - you get somewhere. I've been on Alton Towers
    forums for a decade, have - and continue to - done my fair share of moaning. I could list off the things we've been successful with over the years - but had it just been down to a forum, many of those things wouldn't have happened. And it's not just me - others have stood up too.

    But if you want action and a response, if it means enough to you - do more than just sit in front of a screen whinging.

    The coffee shop will hopefully serve decent coffee. They need to get one of the big retailers in to ensure consistent quality.

    The responses here don't suprise me - Alton have hit a low ebb. But some people here haven't had a good word to say about any changes or additions at ATR in the time I have been part of the community.
     
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  19. RoyJess

    RoyJess TowersStreet Member

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    I hope that this towers loving care also includes repairing the access roads that are full of pot holes.

    As much as this is great news, and like many have already said, this all should have been standard policies over the years to keep the place in tip top condition. I just hope that this is not just to gloss over further unannounced cuts to the park.
     
  20. Jordan

    Jordan TS Contributor

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    *buys shares in Leek Signs and vinyl printing machine manufacturers*
     
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