News 3/10/2017

Thorpe Park Seeks Planning Changes

Posted By Josh

Thorpe Park have recently submitted a request to Runnymede Borough Council to change how they submit and gain planning permission for future rides, attractions and buildings.  It is hoped that, if approved, the changes will allow for a simpler and speedy process behind the scenes.

Currently, the resort has 2 ways of applying for planning permission.  One method involves submitting a Mid Term Development Plan (MTDP) every few years, which roughly outlines where the resort might introduce new attractions, buildings, etc, as well as rough sizes.  Then, when the resort decides fully on exact details, they can submit detailed plans, and gain permission quicker by referencing the MTDP.  The most recent MTDP was submitted in 2010, and was referenced to include developments up until 2016.  Both Storm Surge and The Swarm, as well as all buildings on Swarm's island, were approved under the MTDP.

The second method involves simply applying for permission of developments on a case-by-case basis.  This can involve more paperwork and take a bit more time behind the scenes.  Derren Brown's Ghost Train was approved this way, since it wasn't marked on the most recent MTDP.


So what does this mean?

In practice, this means very little!  If approved, Thorpe Park will still be able to build buildings (as long as they're under 5m tall) and build new rides (as long as they're under 25m tall), and make modifications to existing ones.  It just means the resort doesn't need to put in an application to do this - saving on boring behind the scenes stuff (paperwork, etc).  It also means that we likely won't see any plans online for small or medium sized developments.

So does this mean they can build a new roller coaster for next year without anyone knowing!?

No.  This application won't cover roller coasters - the resort will still need to put in an application for them each time, and plans will likely work their way online eventually.

It DOES mean that things such as new / extended buildings (such as shops / restaurants across the resort, kiosks at the Admissions area, etc) and small rides can be introduced, and we wouldn't know until construction started!

 So this isn't that big a deal really?

Not really.  The main point of this application is to save both the resort and the local council time, effort and money for new developments.  The resort and local council have a good working relationship; this just builds on that.  All it means is that we can't scour the internet and find out every little detail of new things before they come out!


What would you like to see come to Thorpe Park in the coming years?  Aside from a new roller coaster, what smaller attractions would you like to see join the line up?  Why not join our forums and share your thoughts!

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