Fans of the period melodrama, Downton Abbey will be delighted to learn that an all new immersive experience is on the drawing board.
Based on the hugely popular TV series, Downton Abbey: The Class Experience is set to open at Higherton House, North Yorkshire, in Spring 2015.
Viscount Snowberry, the driving force behind the attraction which will be based at his family’s 16th Century Grade 1 listed home, talked Blooloop through the creative process:
“I’m just so excited to be able to bring Downton Abbey to the fans. The design team have been simply fantastic in turning the TV series into a family experience. Initially we struggled to find storylines that had enough action to inspire a ride or attraction. I mean it’s mostly drinking tea and having interminable dinners under the disapproving gaze of the Dowager Countess, or all that dreary below stairs stuff, but eventually inspiration struck and we’ve come up with some truly thrilling ideas incorporating the very latest bleeding edge technologies.”
Blooloop has been given exclusive access to the plans to date and can report that the following attractions will feature:
- Whisk-a-Whey! – A kiddie ride inspired by Mrs Patmore’s new electric whisk. Slowly rotating electric or manually operated carriages will be available – guests decide which to ride!
- Save the Pigs! – A water play feature where guests must help Lady Mary carry water to save the pigs that are at no point in any danger. (Warning: guests may get slightly damp as they follow this unlikely storyline.)
- Above Stairs/Below Stairs! – A new interactive mobile experience where guests take a fun test to assess whether they can cut the mustard and be a genuine Lord or Lady. Etiquette, table manners and the ability to keep a stiff upper lip when bombarded with demands from the lower classes will be required!
- Reputation! – A 4D dark ride experience inspired by the midnight rush to move the dead Turkish diplomat from Lady Mary’s bedroom. Will Lady Mary be dishonoured and does it actually matter?
- Elope! – A high octane thrill ride at speeds approaching 30 mph. This fully immersive and anticlimactic experience is themed around the unsuccessful elopement of Lady Sybil and Tom the chauffeur.
Viscount Snowberry is currently seeking attractions professionals to help with the master planning of the experience. In particular he is keen to appeal to the North American fans of the series, “We’d love to have some of our American cousins join the team."
However, he is firm that Downton Abbey: The Class Experience will be a high quality celebration of the British upper classes: "We do not want to work with any riff raff. Those with short vowels need not apply!”