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Corkscrew (Alton Towers)

Corkscrew (Alton Towers)

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roller coaster
Corkscrew (Alton Towers) overview.jpg
Overview of Corkscrew.
Alton Towers
Location Alton, Staffordshire, England, UK
Status Defunct
Operated April 4, 1980 to November 9, 2008
Cost £1,250,000
Manufacturer Vekoma
Type Steel
Model / product Corkscrew with bayerncurve
Riders per train 24
Hourly capacity 1,100
Propulsion Chain lift hill
Height75 feet
Drop68 feet
Top speed40 mph
Length2400 feet
Steepest drop43°
Corkscrew (Alton Towers) logo.png

Corkscrew was a steel roller coaster located in the Ug Land (now known as Dark Forest) area of Alton Towers in Alton, Staffordshire, England, UK. It was built by Vekoma and opened on April 4, 1980. It was the first full-circuit roller coaster in the United Kingdom with two inversions and the first major attraction at the park.

History[edit | edit source]

One of the original Arrow trains

Corkscrew opened on April 4, 1980, to much publicity. It was the first roller coaster at the park. During the first few months of operation, 5-6 hour waits were not uncommon, often forcing the park to close early to avoid being swamped by guests. In 1999, the ride was re-themed to fit in with the prehistoric theme of Ug Land.

Over the years, the ride became notoriously rough. At some point between 1993 and 1995, the original trains (built by Arrow Dynamics) were replaced with trains from Vekoma in an attempt to improve the ride experience. In 2008, Alton Towers confirmed that the Corkscrew was to be dismantled to make way for the 2010 roller coaster Thirteen (then named Secret Weapon 6). Corkscrew ceased operation on November 9, 2008 after a special event to honor the attraction.

When the Corkscrew was taken down, the double corkscrew inversions were kept. They were repainted purple with gold supports and now stand at the front of the park with a plaque to honor the ride. The front car from one of the trains was listed on eBay to raise money for charity and sold on December 15, 2008 for £7,200. The rest of the trains were sent to Heide Park for their Big Loop roller coaster. The remaining material was scrapped.

Design[edit | edit source]


The 'Bayerncurve' mentioned in the model name is essentially a helix which winds up and down as it turns.

Trains[edit | edit source]

2 trains with 6 cars per train. In each car, riders are arranged 2 across in 2 rows for a total of 24 riders per train. Corkscrew had a transfer track which could store one of the trains.

Photo Gallery[edit | edit source]