The Big Dipper has created a century of memories for millions of people.
With it’s ‘onion’ or ‘teardrop’ toppers, as they have been affectionately known through the years, the Big Dipper has become symbolic to thrill-seeking rollercoaster enthusiasts – it’s the one everyone knows. As Blackpool Pleasure Beach opens it’s gates for the 2023 season, the Big Dipper will take centre stage with celebrations planned for it’s actual anniversary on August 23. These pictures, courtesy of Blackpool Pleasure Beach, have been rarely seen, they are a real treat and show the rollercoaster from construction right through the decades.
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1. Big Dipper - 100 Years of Memories
Two young girls stroll across a swathe of undeveloped land at the Pleasure Beach against the backdrop of the Big Dipper. The roller coaster was built by William Strickler at a cost of just £25,000 Photo: National World
2. Big Dipper - 100 Years of Memories
Thrill seekers round the corner for the first drop in 1972 Photo: Blackpool Pleasure Beach Archives
3. Big Dipper - 100 Years of Memories
The Big Dipper was subject to VAT in 1973 as it was classed as public transport and therefore had a surcharge of 15p added to each ride Photo: National World
4. Big Dipper - 100 Years of Memories
This was in 1937 - it had a different look. Millions of people have ridden the Dipper over the past 100 years since the first couple in 1923, celebrity riders include Diana Dors, American ambassador John Hey, HG Wells and more recently Harry Hill, Julie Walters, Robbie Williams, Olly Murs and famous footballers Wayne Rooney and Mario Balotelli Photo: Blackpool Pleasure Beach Archives
5. Big Dipper - 100 Years of Memories
A superb picture from 1959 Photo: National World
6. Big Dipper - 100 Years of Memories
1953, right at the top. The 'onion' is missing - perhaps for maintenance in its 30th year Photo: Blackpool Pleasure Beach Archives