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Camelot Theme Park Abandoned – The Land of Great Knights, and Amazing Days

October 5, 2013

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Camelot Theme Park can be found at the end of Park Hall Road at the last left before Mill Lane, Charnock Richard, Chorley, Lancashire, England.

Now abandoned, Camelot was opened in 1983 and operated seasonally until 2012. It is owned by The Story Group and was operated by Knights Leisure Limited. Camelot resided on 140+ acres and had 26 attractions, 2 which were water rides and 5 that were roller coasters. The theme of the park was of the legendary Camelot castle and court of King Arthur.

In 1986 The Granada Group took over Camelot Theme Park and in 1995 received over 500,000 visitors. Later in 1998 it was subjected to a buyout and was ran by Prime Resorts Limited. Camelot began seeing a downturn in attendance during its latter years and by 2005 had only received a little less than 340,000 visitors. In a 2006 survey it ranked at the bottom for healthy foods available at a leading tourist attraction.

By 2009 Prime Resorts said that the park would not open for the season. The Camelot Hotel was then bought by Lavender Hotels in March of 2009, and by April 2009 a buyer had been found for the Theme Park. The Story Group were the Camelot Theme Park buyers, who leased it to Knight’s Leisure to run the park. Though this did not last long as the park shut down only 3 years later, and blamed poor summer conditions, the Queen’s Jubilee, and the 2012 London Olympics for the poor number of visitors.

Upon closing the 5 roller coasters of Camelot were : Caterpillar Capers, Knightmare, Whirlwind, Junior Dragon Coaster, and the rare diesel powered Dragon Flyer. Other rides upon closing included the : Excalibur 2, Dungeons of Doom, Jousting Knights Dodgem, The Galleon, Camelot Cascade, Pendragon’s Plunge, Clown Around, Human Cannonball, Falcon’s Flight, Formula-K Go-Karts, Sky Diver’s, Towers of Fun, Kingdom in the Clouds, Sir Lancelot’s Chargers, Bertie Bassett’s Driving School, Playland Express, Junior Jousting Horses, Cup ‘n’ Sorcerer, Junior Galleon, and Kiddies’ Indoor Playland. The 4 shows of Camelot upon closing were : Jousting Tournament, Merlin’s School of Wizardry, Birds of Prey Show, and Merlin’s Magic Show.

Unfortunately, bad things happened at the park including an employee getting struck and killed by The Gauntlet roller coaster in 2001. The park was fined after this because it had no written safety procedures for its staff. Then in 2004, a boy was hit by a bus in the Camelot parking lot, and killed. Finally in 2011, a 12 year old boy fell from the Excalibur 2 ride, thankfully he survived.

Presenter Matthew Corbett took Sooty, Sweep and Soo there in an episode of Sooty & Co.

As of 2013, The Camelot Theme Park and Resort still remain standing, but many of the rides have been moved to other them parks through out this year. There is allegedly a new owner who is planning to redevelop the site, possibly into a some sort of housing development.

The 1989 Camelot Theme Park Brochure.

Where is Camelot Theme Park located? You can find this modern legend with these coordinates. 53.636064,-2.700689.

Images used under Creative Commons License Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike, images were under this license November 22nd, 2013. Images by True British Metal [Flickr/TrueBritishMetal].

comments

  • Amy Robinson

    I loved this place when I was little, but I only ever saw it in the 10 years before it closed. Never got to see it in it’s hayday.

  • http://www.axiam-pc.co.uk Darren Forster

    I went to Camelot a few times as a kid and it was great, I also went there for Century radio’s 2nd year birthday bash. I then went back about two years before it closed for it’s firework spectacular and was so disappointed. I thought no wonder this place is struggling. The park was supposed to be Camelot but a lot of the rides had random themes to them not really associated with Camelot – like the Beano rides (Beano in Camelot???) and also I went in the shops looking for some Camelot souvenir, and yet again very little souvenirs of Camelot or the Knights in the shop, just things like Smiffy’s jokes, and more Beano related merchandise.

    The final thing that was a bit of a joke was when we went for the firework spectacular we thought the park would be open late (like most parks do when they’re putting on fireworks – get more people in, more people on the rides, more people spending more in the shops, opening up the food stands to get people to spend more), but oh no these didn’t open late at all. It got to about 5pm and they moved everyone out into the car parks and told everyone that due to health and safety and the lack of lighting in the theme park they can’t allow anyone in there and we’d all have to watch the fireworks from the car park. At about 5.30pm they finally got round to setting the fireworks off before saying goodbye and go home. I was really disappointed and thought I’ve just been taken for a ride and really ripped off with my money. As much as I liked the theme park I decided not to bother wasting my money in there again and the following year went off to Alton Towers instead, at least they invested in some lighting to keep the park open at night and didn’t have everyone stood watching the fireworks from the car park.

    I also remember that Knights Leisure also own the fairground in Towyn, which is another place I used to go to as a kid, but after seeing what a mess they made of Camelot I really don’t want to go back to that Towyn fair and see how bad that’s gone. I can imagine if they struggled to maintain a theme to Camelot theme park the Towyn fair probably isn’t much better.

  • anthony jones

    omg remember it well..especially the dragon roller coster

    • shaun winstanley

      The dragon flyer has been purchased and moved to Southport Pleasureland, along with the balloon ferris wheel and the galleon pirate ship. http://www.southportpleasureland.com/

  • Padre471

    I lived not far from Camelot, it was a wonderful place in it’s time, sadly it’s final owners (they buy out consortium were directors of the previous company so in effect the same people) had never wanted the site as a theme park and were primarily land developers, making repeated attempts to get planning permission to develop the site (which was consistently turned down as it isn’t needed).

    Under their chronic mismanagement little to no effort was made to invest in the site and it was deliberately allowed to die, something that went down like a sack of shit with locals like myself who remember it with fondness. The final insult was citing two one events (the Olympics and the Diamond Jubilee) that will not, in all likelihood happen again in out life times (and certainly not for many decades to come) for it’s demise. In short it was a shoddy excuse to get their way.

  • alison crowe

    omg didnt no it had closed until today god knows where i was 2 years ago its a shame ive never been and seen some of the videos on you tube of there place has creepet me out with it all closed would be scarey at night to walk around