Red Arrows fly over – and into – Blackpool

Blackpool Pleasure Beach opened their latest ride with much fanfare on Bank Holiday Monday.

Manufactured by Gerstlauer, the Red Arrows Skyforce is licensed by the Royal Air Force. Each ride lasts approximately one minute thirty seconds, with twelve seats. The ride is in the former Bling location, which has been vacant since the end of the 2011 season.

Red Arrows SkyForce is 72ft tall, shadowed by the 213ft tall Big One rollercoaster. Riders are invited to be harnessed into one of the twelve plane gondolas, before being slowly lifted into the air. At this point the impromptu Red Arrow pilots have full control over the tilt and spin of their vehicle – this allows variation to be created in the ride’s intensity for individual riders.

The ride isn’t the park’s first foray into aviation themeing however. Sir Hiram Maxim designed the Flying Machines ride which opened in 1904, and is now Blackpool Pleasure Beach’s longest serving ride.

The ride was welcomed with a special performance above Blackpool’s South Shore, which was witnessed by thousands of holidaymakers both within the Pleasure Beach and on the famous promenade. The Red Arrows also performed on Monday above Liverpool and Wales.

Nick Thompson, deputy managing director commented;
“We cannot wait to welcome the Red Arrows to Blackpool Pleasure Beach. Skyforce is a unique ride and a first for the UK which we are certain will be a big hit for all our guests. The Red Arrows give their audiences a thrill across the globe and we are sure the new ride will give our guests a big thrill!”

Luckily, one travel editor caught a lucky glimpse of the show from one of Blackpool’s many Bed and Breakfasts!