For the first time, British theme park fans are being invited to vote for their favourite attractions and experiences, thanks to the launch of the brand new UK Theme Park Awards.
Nominations for the inaugural UK Theme Park Awards have been revealed, with categories such as Theme Park of the Year, Best Value and Best Accessibility. This new celebration aims to recognise the best rides, attractions, shows and events on offer in the UK, as well as rewarding the best customer service and more.
The awards are presented by the ThemeParks-UK website, which provides an independent guide to the UK’s theme parks. The website enables visitors to access a wide range of information on the most popular theme parks in the UK.
The UK Theme Park Awards will be judged by an expert panel, including Paul Kelly, the Chief Executive of BALPPA (British Association of Leisure Parks, Piers and Attractions) and Blooloop’s Managing Director Charles Read. The judges will be honouring attractions in 20 different categories.
“With my career-long love affair with Theme Parks and Attractions, I am delighted to be part of the judging panel for the UK Theme Park Awards,” said Kelly.
Theme Park of the Year
The first nominations have been announced, for the coveted Theme Park of the Year Award:
- Alton Towers
- Blackpool Pleasure Beach
- Chessington World of Adventures
- Drayton Manor
- Dreamland Margate
- Fantasy Island
- Flamingo Land
- LEGOLAND Windsor
- Paultons Park
- Thorpe Park
Nominations for the remaining 19 categories will be revealed between 1 – 20 May. Each category will have 10 nominees, and the organisers will be revealing them one category at a time, every day at 12 noon. These announcements will be made via the ThemeParks-UK social media channels: Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
There are several big players in the running, such as the parks above. Other attractions nominated within the various categories also include Lightwater Valley and Flamingo Land in Yorkshire, Fantasy Island in Lincolnshire, Dreamland Margate in Kent, Adventure Island in Kent, Oakwood Theme Park in Pembrokeshire and Paultons Park in Hampshire.
Theme park enthusiasts will also be recognised in the Blogger of the Year and Vlogger of the Year categories.
The full list of 20 categories is as follows:
- Theme Park of the Year
- Best New Attraction
- Best Theme Park for Families
- Best Theme Park for Thrills
- Best Roller Coaster
- Best Thrill Ride
- Best Water Ride
- Best Family Area
- Best Indoor Attraction
- Best Show
- Best Restaurant
- Best Accommodation
- Best Halloween Event
- Best Christmas Event
- Best Social Media Engagement
- Best Customer Service
- Best Value
- Best Accessibility
- Blogger of the Year
- Vlogger of the Year
Voting and final results
The public will be able to vote later in the year, and these votes will be added to those of the judging panel in order to get the final results.
This panel is made up of experts from within the UK attractions industry:
- Paul Kelly (Chief Executive – British Association of Leisure Parks, Piers and Attractions)
- Andy Hine MBE (Chairman – Roller Coaster Club of Great Britain)
- Paul Burton (Chairman – European Coaster Club)
- Charles Read (Managing Director – Blooloop)
- Lawrence Roots (Editor – ThemeParks-UK)
“There are more than 40 theme parks in the UK, visited by millions of people every year, and it is about time that we recognise those offering the very best experiences,” says Roots.
Top image: Alton Towers