Welcome to The Sanctuary. A recently re-opened medical rehabilitation centre run by the doctors and nurses of the enigmatic Ministry of Joy, a sinister department concerned with the correction of the stresses and strains of the modern world. The facility is ready for the Ministry to conduct important new experiments ahead of their next big project, to be unveiled within the X Sector, but what exactly is the link between this scare maze and The Smiler? Have the Ministry finally found a way to bring Marmalisation to the masses?
The Check In for the Sanctuary was found within the tranqulity of Her Ladyship's Garden leading through the house conservatory, where you could expect to be batched into small groups and led through a dark environment. With actors, lighting effects, physical props and plenty of scares, this was no placid institute...
Join us as we sum up the storyline and the experience that was once The Sanctuary...
You would begin your journey into The Sanctuary in the curtain lined conservatory where the Director of The Ministry of Joy spoke to you via video feed. Discussing the highly secretive work of the ministry, the Director then introduced you to the Chief Medical Officer of the facility, Dr Kelman, and it was explained that The Sanctuary provided "social compliance" treatment at the facility. A nurse within the conservatory then batched budding advocates into small groups before admitting them to The Sanctuary.
Once in the maze the group met the Chief Medical Officer, Dr Kelman, who revealed further details of the therapies that take place in the facility, also mentioning briefly some of the controversies surrounding The Sanctuary and how they were previously closed down.
The group then entered the facility, and were able to see first hand some of the treatments on offer as they meet the first of the patients. In this first room a TV played an incoherent video before exploding in a ball of fire, at which the patient in the room became distressed at the loss of his TV.
Moving on advocates would find themselves in the kitchen, where some of the staff would wander amongst their overheating pots and pans, looking equally as terrifying as the patients within this imposing clinic. These staff would lead you forwards into the wards, and deeper into the mysterious world of The Sanctuary, further into the mysterious West Wing of the ruins. It became clear that it was you they had been waiting for, but could you stay brave enough to face Marmalisation?
With bright lights, pungent smells and a shower of water for good measure, your brainwashing experience led you down to the lower levels...
Here you would discover the facility's operating theatre, with the mortuary a little too closeby for comfort. No matter how much you may have wished to depart the morgue as quickly as possible, you would soon realise that the only way was forward into a series of claustrophobic corridors, leading advocates to be split into smaller groups before going into a cage maze with a twist to help complete their 'correction' before they could escape back into the real world.
At the end of Scarefest 2011 it was reported that the Hamble Twins, inhabitants of The Boiler House for 3 years, had finally been caught. With the maze's story drawn to a close, speculation turned to a new scare maze for Scarefest 2012.
With the removal of the Black Hole tent, the new maze found its home in the largely unused West Wing of the Towers ruins, joining Terror of the Towers. During August 2012 The Sanctuary was announced and tidbits of information gradually leaked out over the following months to whet guests appetite. Some of this information pointed out that the storyline would tie into the new ride for 2013.
The Sanctuary opened to extremely positive reviews, with much appreciation of the characters, set pieces and all out assault of the senses that the new maze offered. Whilst it was initially unclear exactly how the attraction would relate to the new ride, later revealed as The Smiler, it became apparent that the scare maze had introduced a number of key concepts for the new ride, including The Ministry of Joy and the process of Marmalisation.
The Sanctuary was so successful during its initial run at Scarefest 2012 that when The Smiler's opening was delayed until May 2013, the park decided to reopen the scare maze for the start of the new season as a free attraction until the coaster was ready to roll.
The Sanctuary then reappeared for Scarefest 2013 and 2014 before finally closing its doors and making way for a change of offering within the Ruins to accommodate The Haunting of Molly Crowe, Terror of the Towers and Sub Species: The End Games in 2015.