Coaster Kingdom

Have any memories of any of the rides featured in our anniversary features? Do you have any interesting stories relating to their history? How do you feel these rides have impacted their particular parks?

Read through some of your contributions, and add your own by filling in the form below.

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I have been visiting Drayton Manor for a number of years and although many rides have changed the look of the park, by far the most dramatic has been Shockwave. When I first saw pictures of the ride on the local news I was shocked that it was even possible to stand up on a coaster. It was a few years before I was able to ride it, and since then it is difficult to think of a trip to the park without the ride. Turning what was my small local park into one that now challenges the best in the country for the best day out.

John Wilkes on Shockwave

I visited Blackpool for the first time last year and completely fell in love with the place. It's like a treasure trove, where around every corner you find another hidden wonder. Of course you don't need to search hard for the best one of all: The Flying Machines. OK, so the Big Dipper and Grand National are more exciting, but nothing prepares you for the feeling of exhilaration you feel when going around in these huge arks. Absolutely wonderful.

Michael on Captive Flying Machines

A very under-rated coaster, and what it lacks in airtime it gains in presence. I still ride this with people getting excited about their first major coaster.

Jennifer Green on The Big One

This isn't the best ride in the world, but it certainly has an unmistakable character, and despite the dead spots seems to have a kick right up to the end. People still really enjoy Shockwave and it has done so much for the park.

Michael on Shockwave

My opinion on the Big One changes more than any other ride. Perhaps because the ride itself is far from consistent. Originally I loved the ride because such a huge ride was very much a novelty. Then I rode it more and became disappointed with how slow the latter stages are and the lack of airtime in the first half.

However more recently my opinion has changed once again. The ride may have no airtime but it isn't about that. The park already has two fine wooden examples of perfect airtime machines. As an experience the Big One is unrivalled. Few other rides look so imposing, and the views from the ride are incredible, especially at night.

Many comment that it is a very rough ride and indeed it is a physical ride, much like the parks wooden coasters. If it was to feature over head restraints this roughness would be unforgivable but the lapbars mean that you seem to have a lot of freedom as you motor along. It seems for many people riding it means a great sense of achievement in much the same way as running a marathon. It was long, wasn’t especially comfortable but the overall experience was worth it.

John Wilkes on The Big One

Anniversary Features

Birthday Greetings

With thanks to everyone who contributed their thoughts. We received hundreds, but here is a snapshot of opinions submitted. If you wish to add your thoughts, please add them using the form to the right.

Jon Happy birthday Shockwave. Still one of the most unique major coasters in the country
Mark Maxim A special happy birthday top Hiram's Flying machines. He is an ancestor of mine. I live Wareham, Mass., USA home of the Pilgrim Maxims
matt happy birthday flying machines
Simon Montague Great work on another excellent feature. I agree with the comment below that Shockwave's heartline is simply incredible.
mick happy birthday big one. such is my love of this ride i asked my fiance to marry me on the climb up to the top.
kevin p first ride on Shockwave was only last year. the heartline spin is still one of the most amazing loops I've ever done!!
chris williams happy birthday shockwave. excellent site btw
ChristopherPearson love the colin bryan interview. what a top chap!
robert happy birthday flying machines. 100 years old and still going strong :D
Devinia Happy birthday Shockwave, one of the most original rides in the UK
Del Happy birthday 1994 rides and the flying machines!
FAB Happy birthday rides. First rode the Big One, and while not perfect is amazing at night
John L Great feature (again!). Happy birthday rides :)
Kel Great work CK. Excellent features. Happy birthday rides
Dom Said it before and I'll say it again, shockwave rules. Happy birthday shockwave
Marcus Messages lost due to technical probs. Please feel free to add your comments again. Ta.