Drayton Manor Park reopens following coronavirus lockdown but with restrictions in place
Drayton Manor Park has partially reopened after three months of lockdown, with safety measures in place to protect visitors during the coronavirus crisis.
The Staffordshire-based theme park opened its doors again over the weekend – putting into place social distancing and health precautions – but is far from its usual summer visitor numbers, remaining “cautiously optimistic”.
On Saturday (July 4), the park reopened its family-favourite Thomas Land, as well as the Carousel, Jolly Buccaneer, Accelerator, Flying Dutchman and 15-acre zoo.
The remainder of the park will not fully open until Saturday 18th July.
As part of its commitment to reopening safely, social distancing measures have been put into place, with hand sanitiser stations on display, and regular routine cleaning of rides.
Although closed to the public during the recent lockdown, Drayton Manor Park has continued to maintain and tend to its resident animals, all housed in the attraction’s zoo. Visitors are now once again able to visit an array of wildlife, including eight new baby arrivals.
The West Midlands attraction has also introduced an innovative virtual queuing system in certain areas of the park, which allows guests to queue digitally via the Drayton Manor Park app.
According to a spokesperson for the park, “Once they have joined a queue, riders can see how long they have left until their allocated ride time and receive a notification and boarding pass, which will be scanned before boarding the attraction when it’s their turn to ride.”
The park is also only allowing card payments, with no ATM machines operating, and takeaway food services only.
Staff members working with the public are required to wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), including face masks and shields; while acrylic screens have been installed at customer serving points throughout the park, including guest services, retail and catering outlets. Temperature checks are also being carried out to detect possible COVID-19 symptoms.
Following a long period of closure during a peak season, the venue has reported promising attendance figures so far, claiming many local families are keen to get back to the park. During warmer weather, visitor numbers may improve for the attraction.
However, it is yet to be seen if business will pick up for the leisure complex in the same way it has for some hospitality venues like bars and pubs which also reopened on Saturday.
What are the new restrictions at Drayton Manor Park?
- Capacities have been restricted on site to enable a safe guest flow. This means a limited amount of tickets are available per day.
- The site will be opened in phases.
- Phase 1 will be from Saturday 4th July – Friday 17th July with Thomas Land, the Zoo and selected family rides available.
- Phase 2 will be from Saturday 18th July – Saturday 31st October with the whole park open (excluding rides that are closed due to COVID-19).
- Selected attractions will be closed due to government guidance. Click here for a list of rides and attractions available
- Temperatures of all staff and guests will be taken before entering the site. If a temperature is above 38 degrees centigrade unfortunately you will not be able to enter.
- All staff have undergone full training and will be wearing appropriate PPE at all times.
- The park has implemented a virtual queue app for all rides and selected catering outlets to help manage queue lines.
- All outlets will have clear shields to help protect visitors and staff at all times.
- Food outlets will be open as takeaways with preorders available on the Drayton Manor App.
- Additional hand-sanitising units will be available on site.
- The site will undergo enhanced cleaning. Rides and outlets may close for cleaning at periods throughout the day.
- Tickets will only be available online and won’t be available on the day. Do not visit if you haven’t pre-booked your ticket.
- Card payments are only available across the site and ATMs won’t be available.
- Numbers will be restricted in outlets and a one-way operation will be in place
- Animal experiences and keeper talks have been suspended until further notice.
- Washrooms will be regularly cleaned and numbers will be restricted.
- All entrances will be open to allow more space and manage guest flow into the park.
How visitors can help
- Wash your hands with soap and water throughout the day for at least 20 seconds.
- Face masks – Guests can wear these across the park if they wish. Face Masks are advised within the Tamarin Trail to protect our animals.
- Do not attend if you have:
- High temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back.
- A new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual).
- Loss of smell or taste – this can be a sign of respiratory infections.
For more details on all the new rules, restrictions for visiting Drayton Manor Park, click here.