the prisoner

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the prisoner

Postby Gary » 19 May 2003, 18:19

Nick and a few others are probably aware of my love of the sixties T.V. series The Prisoner.

The episode "The Girl who was Death" (Circa 1967) I am led to believe was partly shot at both Battersea and Kursaal Amusement Parks..

Below are a list of the rides featured in the episode but which rides belonged to Battersea and which rides belonged to Kursaal?

I would LOVE to know..(Maybe I best buy the Kursaal book?? :oops: )

A large structure called Laff in the Dark..(I'm really interested in this...)

The Rotor (Millennium Bug/Round Up type ride)

The River Caves

A roller coaster situated next to a watersplash (Think BPB's Vikingar)

A Paratrooper

Ghost Train

A vintage carousel

An octopus

A Swirl (Think Southport's Black Hole before the powers that be put a cover over it and turned it into a "dark ride")

Aeroplanes that turned in a circle like Hurricain Jets but also turned upside down whilst going around..

A Boxing Booth!!!!!..(methinks that this didn't really exist but it was integral to the episode)

Any information would be appreciated!
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Re: the prisoner

Postby Graeme » 19 May 2003, 21:15

Gary wrote:A large structure called Laff in the Dark..(I'm really interested in this...)


I've never been to either park (well, Kursaal after it had been closed for years and rides taken out), but I can offer you a small bit of information about "Laff in the Dark" rides. These were one of Harry Traver's rides (like Turtle Chase and those notorious woodies). It was his version of a ghost train. Basically, I think it involved going through the dark, banging through doors, loud noises etc... probably just your cup of tea!
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Re: the prisoner

Postby David » 19 May 2003, 23:28

I've never been to either park (well, Kursaal after it had been closed for years and rides taken out), but I can offer you a small bit of information about "Laff in the Dark" rides. These were one of Harry Traver's rides (like Turtle Chase and those notorious woodies). It was his version of a ghost train. Basically, I think it involved going through the dark, banging through doors, loud noises etc... probably just your cup of tea!


The Laff In The Dark also had the Traver 'Trick Track'

Its been along time since I have seen the show so I am unsure on some rides. I'll offer background info on both parks.
The Rotor (Millennium Bug/Round Up type ride)

Battersea Park had the biggest version built by Orton & Spooner. It was also the last version built by firm based in Burton On Trent.
The River Caves

This was definetly filmed at Southend.
A roller coaster situated next to a watersplash (Think BPB's Vikingar)

This was the Water Chute at Battersea. Was the car goes up the lift hill you can see much of the parkk in the background including the Big Dipper. Southend also had one.

After Battersea closed the Water Chute remained and opened on Bank Holidays for a few years.
A Paratrooper

Don't know where this is filmed at. Battersea definetly had one and its likly Southend did.
Ghost Train

Possibly Southend?
A vintage carousel

Both Parks had a Galloper but not had a carousel! The one in the Prisinor was based at Southend. The Southend set had fewer steps and normal and was set in the ground.
An octopus

Both parks had one of these at some point.
A Swirl (Think Southport's Black Hole before the powers that be put a cover over it and turned it into a "dark ride")

Southend definetl;y had one, a German version which has a much higher roof than the English version. Battersea is also likly to have had one at some point.

I understand this ride is now traveling in the London section? I know the version traveling is German but unsure if its the same machine.

Aeroplanes that turned in a circle like Hurricain Jets but also turned upside down whilst going around..

Definetly Southend. this is now own by non guild showmen and can be seen traveling the the south.
A Boxing Booth!!!!!..(methinks that this didn't really exist but it was integral to the episode)[/quote]
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Re: the prisoner

Postby Graeme » 20 May 2003, 08:37

David wrote:The Laff In The Dark also had the Traver 'Trick Track'


You know, I didn't realise the UK ever had a Laff in the Dark ride. I'm sure if one had remained, it would be the most fascinating dark ride in the country.

Both Parks had a Galloper but not had a carousel!


Oh, what is the difference between a galloper and a carousel?

PS - Do you know which park is featured in the Dudley Moore/Peter Cooke film "Bedazzled"? They ride a scenic railway. Was that Battersea or Margate?
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Postby David » 20 May 2003, 09:08

I forgot to say that the plane ride is traveled by Maisons in the South. Another ride I am trying to catch up with.

A Galloper goes clockwise and a Carousel goes anti clockwise.

Also the Galloper is an English built ride and the Carousel was mainly built in America and Europe.

In America these rideswere mainly built for parks but there were smaller ones built for carnivals.

In England the Galloper was intended more for traveling although the did end up in amusement parks as well.

In Europe the Carousel was mainly built for traveling be in this case these were some times fully enclosed within a building.

This is not the same way as the American versions where at parks were usually in a building. These European models were the cenre peice of a bar or a dance floor.

If you go to De Eftling in Holland you can see a textbook example of one of these.

There are other differences be those are the main ones.
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Re: the prisoner

Postby David » 20 May 2003, 09:11

Graeme Cassidy wrote:PS - Do you know which park is featured in the Dudley Moore/Peter Cooke film "Bedazzled"? They ride a scenic railway. Was that Battersea or Margate?


Don't think I have ever seen the film. Notice anything about the park sorrounding the area?
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the prisoner

Postby Gary » 20 May 2003, 17:48

Many thanks David for your help, and thanks too to Graeme.
I was aware about the type of ride Laff in the Dark was but I honestly never knew one existed in this country by that name..
I too, didn't know the difference between a carousel and Galloper..the one in the prisoner turned like most in this country.. clockwise.

PS..How many carousels/gallopers turn anti-clockwise in this country :?:

..Blackpool has two..North Pier and Derby Racers
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Postby Nick » 20 May 2003, 20:09

Most of the carousels in this country are modern imported rides, such as the one at Coney Beach (Porthcawl) or Britannia Pier (Great Yarmouth). Most traditional gallopers, on the other hand, are vintage rides, with one or two exceptions: the 4-abreast gallopers at Loudoun Castle and the gallopers at Barry Island Pleasure Park and Fantasy Island are recent copies.

For more on vintage rides in this country, visit my vintage ride list on thegalloper.com: http://www.thegalloper.com/staticconten ... rides.html.

Of course, there are lots of good books on the subject available from Joyland, such as Vintage Funfairs; Roundabout People; Jump On, Jump On; and Carousel Animals.

Nick
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