Standing proud at the heart of the theme park, the iconic Alton Towers are brimming with history. The ruins themselves are full of surprises, from hidden period features, tales from the past or the viewing galleries on the roof that offers spectacular views over the park. They are also home to a tale with a twist, as unfold in Hex - The Legend of the Towers.
The area around the entrance to the Towers is known as Fountain Square and provides access to Cloud Cuckoo Land on one side and Dark Forest on another. The square is home Woodcutters Bar and Grill, which offers views out over the Dovecote, one of the Towers' many formal gardens.
The Towers have always been a big part of Alton Towers, even before the theme park existed. Since the 1950s they have housed attractions, when the Model Railway was installed in 1957. Located in the Chapel, at the time it was the largest miniature railway in Great Britain.
In the 1970s the Towers also welcomed a new addition in the form of the Planetarium, which was located in the central courtyard, with a Camera Obscura also located nearby for a time. Over the following years work began to allow the public to explore the ruins and many new floors and stairways were fitted to improve safety. From this period, visitors were allowed onto the rooftops, affording them spectacular views across the park and the Staffordshire Moorlands beyond.
Since the 1960s the Armoury, which was once the main entrance into the house, had been home to the park's main shop, the Towers Gift Centre. However, this shop closed in 1998, when the Armoury, Picture Gallery Octagon, and House Conservatory were renovated to become part of Hex - The Legend of The Towers, which takes guests on a journey through the darker history of the Towers.
The Model Railway departed the park in 1992, when the Chapel received a significant refurbishment to allow the highly decorative ceilings to go on show once again. Now the Chapel is mainly used as an event space, such as during ghost tours, but at the turn of the century it once again briefly played host to an attraction, when first Starchaser and then Crux were installed in the space. These Christian educational attraction were short-lived, however, and the exhibition closed a few years later.