Paultons Park puts brakes on new season tickets
SALES of new season tickets for Paultons Park have been suspended in response to the ongoing challenges posed by coronavirus.
The tickets, priced at £169 for adults and children over a metre, were removed from general sale on Monday following an announcement by the Ower-based attraction the previous week.
Stephen Lorton, commercial director at Paultons Park, said: “Due to the ongoing operational challenges Covid-19 poses and the uncertainty of when restrictions and guidelines may be lifted, we have taken the difficult decision to suspend the sale of new season tickets until further notice.”
The move follows a similar decision by the Merlin group which runs nationwide attractions including Legoland, Thorpe Park and Alton Towers to cease the sale of its annual passes.
Paultons Park closed on 20th March in response to the coronavirus outbreak and reopened on 4th July following the lifting of government restrictions.
However, due to a reduction in capacity, season ticket holders were required to book visits online, with slots released every Friday morning for the following week.
Many were left angry after the slots set aside ran out in hours, while the public was still able to buy tickets for the same days. The park later allowed season ticket holders to visit on any day after 2pm without needing to book.
It has also levied a controversial £1 booking fee for season pass holders planning to visit at peak times, which is then donated to the Southampton Children’s Hospital.
The attraction will continue to allow all existing season pass holders to renew their tickets, and will also allow them to be purchased for children of pass holders who reach a metre in height.
Mr Lorton said: “While this is disappointing for all, we feel it is the right decision and will allow us to continue offering current season ticket holders the experience they have always loved at Paultons Park.
“Existing season ticket holders will be able to renew their season tickets as usual and we will continue to review the season ticket offering, once we can resume operating in a more normal environment.”
The family-run park, which opened in 1983, covers 140 acres and has more than 70 rides and attractions including Jurassic-themed attraction Lost Kingdom and Peppa Pig World
This year it won TripAdvisor’s best-rated UK amusement park for the fifth year in a row – the only park to achieve this. It's also ranked fourth in Europe on the site.