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Corkscrew to go in 2009?

Park News
Tuesday, 8th July 2008 By Dan Ketteringham

It is heavily rumoured that Corkscrew, the roller coaster that put Alton Towers on the map, will be removed at the end of next year.

Corkscrew was installed in 1980 and was responsible for visitor numbers more than doubling in its first year of operation. Its arrival proved to be a turning point for Alton Towers, taking them from the gentile leisure park of the 1970s to the fully fledged theme park of the 1980s.

Now, however, it is thought that the ride will be removed on the eve of its 30th birthday, possibly to make way for a new roller coaster in Ug Land in 2010. It's believed that the trains on the ride need to be replaced soon, and that the cost of doing so would be too great to justify.

Additionally, in what seem to be big plans for the area, it is rumoured that Ug Swinger may go as soon as the end of this year, or possibly mid-way through next season.

Adding to the speculation is the fact that senior managers for Alton Towers have recently been spotted several times walking through Ug Land, examining plans. John Wardley, the mastermind behind other coasters at the park including Nemesis, Oblivion and Air, has also been seen in the area.

If the ride does go, it will be a sad day for most fans of the park; it would be the second such removal of an iconic attraction in six years following the removal of the Swan Boats ride at the end of 2003. However, few would argue that the latter's (eventual) successor, Battle Galleons, is not as good - and many also now find the ageing Corkscrew rough and uncomfortable to ride.

For next year, meanwhile, current rumours indicate two new rides, one of which possibly being a children's water ride in Cred Street, near where Bouncing Bugs is currently situated.

We'll keep you updated on all of these rumours as and when we hear more.

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Wear comfortable shoes or trainers. You have a lot of wanking to do.