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13:40 Page 42


Park Profile


with identifying manufacturers that work with small/medium sized parks. German manufacturer Gerstlauer is a great example of a company we enjoy working with.


PW: What seasonal events do you have planned this year? PV: Oakwood is currently preparing for ‘After Dark’, which sees the park open until 10pm on certain days throughout August. During After Dark, guests can ride rollercoasters into the night and enjoy live music and entertainment, fireworks and a UV paint party. In October, Oakwood will welcome Spooktacular, the park’s


annual Halloween celebration, which will see a host of new spooky rides and scare mazes, on top of Oakwood’s usual fun. Finally, to celebrate the end of the 2019 season, Oakwood will host a firework spectacular on Saturday 3rd September.


PW: Tell me about your food offering. PV: Oakwood has a variety of places to eat including a restaurant, burger bar, café and spooky pizzeria, ‘The Haunt’, where visitors can watch the action of Witch Hunt unfold live on screens. Multiple food stands also offer fairground goodies like doughnuts and candyfloss. Oakwood is one of the few theme parks that allows guests to bring their own


food with plenty of outdoor picnic areas. We want a day at Oakwood to be accessible and affordable for everyone and understand that being able to bring packed lunches can make a real difference to some of our visitors.


PW: And your retail offering? PV: Oakwood has a dedicated shop where guests can pick up souvenirs such as teddies, toys, accessories and branded goods. As well as being able to buy individual ride photos and memorabilia, guests can also purchase unlimited photo passes on arrival, giving them access to all pictures taken of them throughout the day.


PW: How has the industry - and what guests are looking for - changed since you first opened and why? PV: The emergence of family-based attractions and adventure-based activities, like trampoline parks and tree-based trails, have definitely added a new element


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of competition in the industry. They generally have a far lower operating cost than a theme park yet can command a similar gate/participation price.


PW: How do you see the park developing over the next few years? PV: We are always looking for and considering options for the future. However, future development must represent our family visitor market, add value to our offering, and be achieved within the financial limitations of the park.


PW: What is Oakwood’s USP in terms of UK parks? PV: Oakwood is Wales’ only theme park and has one of the UK’s first wooden roller coasters, Megafobia, which is often ranked in the top 10 wooden rollercoasters in the world. The park boasts a varied offering, combining white-knuckle rides and


children’s experiences, making it the perfect family day out. Whether guests are looking for an adrenaline-fuelled experience or a magical adventure, there’s something for everyone.


AUGUST 2019


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