Corkscrew (Alton Towers)

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Corkscrew (Alton Towers) overview.jpg
Overview of Corkscrew.
Alton Towers
Location Alton, Staffordshire, England, UK
Status Defunct
Operated 4 April 1980 to 9 November 2008
Cost £1,250,000
Replaced by Thirteen
Manufacturer Vekoma
Type Steel
Product Corkscrew with bayerncurve
Riders per train 24
Hourly capacity 1,100
Propulsion Chain lift hill
Height 22.9 metres
Drop 20.7 metres
Top speed 64.4 km/h
Length 731.5 metres
Inversions 2
Duration 1:15
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 4 April 1980. It was the first full-circuit roller coaster in the United Kingdom with two inversions and the first major attraction at the park. It was the park's first roller coaster as well.


One of the original Arrow trains

Corkscrew opened on 4 April 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 common, 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.

At some point in the 1990s, the original trains (built by Arrow Dynamics) were replaced with new rolling stock from Vekoma. However, as the years went on, the ride became notoriously rough. 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 9 November 2008 after a special event to honor the attraction.

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



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


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.

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