£500k losses for fun park

David Hasselhoff launches Nickelodeon Land.

David Hasselhoff launches Nickelodeon Land.

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Washout summers have taken their toll on Blackpool Pleasure Beach after poor weather hit profits.

Bosses at the family-owned attraction say the past two wet summers and current gloomy economic climate have affected operating profit, which fell £400,000 on the previous year’s results.

Although they say sales increased by seven per cent to £31.6m, this was £2m less than budget.

Annual results for Blackpool Pleasure Beach Holdings, which includes the main theme park, hotel and the South Shore Mutual Insurance Company, show the group made a bottom-line loss of £524,000 in 2012 compared to a profit of £329,000 in 2011.

However, the Pleasure Beach has been heavily investing in new attractions such as the £9m Nickelodeon Land in 2011 and the Wallace and Gromit ride set to open this summer.

Managing director Amanda Thompson said: “The first year’s operation of Nickleodeon Land resulted in an increased volume of visitors and an enhancement to their visitor experience.

“The directors consider the extent to which the increase in visitor numbers and average spend per head was less than budget partially reflects the difficult economic climate.

“Since weather during the key 2011 season was materially worse than that of 2010, this is the main reason for the shortfall in sales compared to budget.

“Cost increases, which included expenditure to further improve the 
experience for our guests were in line with budget and, as a result operating profit was down by £400,000 on last year’s results.

“During 2012, when the weather has been on par with 2011, Nickelodeon Land, our six-acre themed amusement park, has been 
instrumental in an increase in guests which has generated additional turnover.

“This year we are confident the opening of a Wallace & Gromit-themed ride, an investment of £5.25m, will see a further increase of visitors.”

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