Saturday, 13 October 2012

Drayton Manor Review

As a child my parents used to take us here every year.  My brother and I were always pleased to come back again and again.  Drayton Manor holds a fond place in my heart, with all those happy family memories.  It is lovely to go myself with my two boys and create more of these treasured moments.

I was especially impressed with the addition of Thomas Land.  The rides there were all very different; some gentle ones for the tiny people and more thrill seeking ones for those a little older.  

Cranky’s Drop Tower and Troublesome Trucks Runaway Coaster are both lots of fun and quite exciting.  We even saw one of the Fat Controller live shows.  My boys were thrilled to have a photo opportunity afterwards; so wonderful that youngest even did a double thumbs up!

Staff at Thomas Land were exceptionally friendly and lovely to my boys.  The Emily’s Adventure Play is one of the safest indoor playgrounds I have ever encountered.  There is a member of staff on the door to ensure no child escapes!  I was much more relaxed than normal with no adults allowed into the play area, you knew the children were safe entertaining each other, my two made a few new friends.  Then Sara (another member of staff monitoring the play area) was doing a sterling job checking all the children were okay.  I have been in the indoor play area in Paultons Park and must confess I left promptly afterwards it was mayhem!  In season in Drayton Manor they restrict sessions to 15 minutes, so it does not get overcrowded and you lose sight of your child.  Working alongside Busy Bee’s they are definitely raising the bar of how these types of play areas should be run!!!

We were lucky with the weather and it stayed dry all day.  So we enjoyed strolling around the Zoo, obviously it is not on the same scale as Zoo’s in their own right, but it’s a pleasant enough walk and the boys enjoyed a little break from the rides before round 2.

I braved the Ben 10 Ultimate Mission with eldest; he was a bit hesitant but enjoyed walking though the queuing system seeing all the character models, the computer screens all lit up and Ben 10 pleading for help!  When we got to the ride he was full of bravado all of a sudden… then I left my stomach to be picked up later!  They have done a great job making it a interesting experience for Ben 10 fans and eldest was pleased he tried it but we were both glad to move swiftly back to Thomas Land!

Here are more of our favourite parts:

Terence’s Driving School

Spencer’s Outdoor Activity Park


There was a 4D Cinema hubbie and I were initially very impressed but poor youngest got a fright when it started and the seats were moving and then water was squirted at him!  I left with him, as I still had my glasses I walked round the front and gave them to another member of staff, I said sorry I could not see a bin in my rush out of the room.  She was fine.  Hubbie came out shortly afterwards, as eldest decided he too did not like it, and the lady inside the Cinema said in a stern voice “I’ll have those”, making out he was trying to make off with the glasses… maybe the loveliness of Thomas Land needs to extend here too!  When your child is scared you want to quickly remove them for what is upsetting them, not be made to feel like a thief… it is pitch black your lucky to get to the door never mind see the bin to return them!  But that is our only grumble of the day!

On the whole we had a magical time and am sure we will be back again in the near future, especially with the great deals they have on tickets.  I am sorely tempted to come back for the Christmas event.

To find out more head to the website.


  1. Never been here but it looks fab. Must try to visit soon x

  2. Can't wait to go now, Lara's going to love it! I just showed her your dino trail photo and she's so excited!

  3. oooo we are off here soon - my boys should love it!

  4. This is a really fun day even if you don't like the rides.