I don't think Thorpe will overtake Alton, at least not in the next 10 years, they have far too long to go, and Merlin probably want to keep Alton as the biggest, for both business and sentimental reasons. It will however close the gap considerably, and will become more of a theme park.
Alton will continue to grow, developing an entertainment complex and an extended water park and more accomodation, probably log cabins/smaller hotel/franchise budget hotel (Travelodge et al.). On park, all the major flats will be replaced, as well as the Flume, Black Hole's site will be used for a new coaster, SW7 and 8 will use any land left open to them, a new large water ride will be built and lots of smaller attractions and changes, with probably one or two major rides closing.
A fairly simple yet potentially interesting thread (hopefully) here. :) Quite simply, where can you see certain British theme parks in a decade’s time? Not the British theme park industry as a whole... but the individual parks. I expect we'll have a real mixture of opinions here! :)
My views:-Thorpe Park - Will continue in the direction in which it is currently headed, and will see a rise in visitor figures. However, the 2015 coaster will be panned by enthusiasts for being a lazy ride with little theming. Several flat rides will also be installed across the park.
Well if LC12 is anything to go by, LC15 will also be heavily themed, so that wont happen. Merlin have said they don't want another Rita on their hands. Also, what suggests Altons visitor fiqures will drop? Everything suggests otherwise. :?
I look into my crystal ball. We are all suddenly transported into the year 2021! The UK industry has come on a long way hasn't it?
SW7 has been well-recieved as Alton Tower's best coaster since Oblivion, and has brought international acclaim. A smaller family coaster similar to Spinball has been built in the Black Hole tent, though it is criticized for a low capacity. Th13teen has been upgraded slightly, with more effects and a randomized drop sequence. The Flume, The Blade, Submission and Enterprise are no longer with us. X-Sector has been rethemed, as has the farm with a new family flat and a show. There are two new thrill flats in Dark Forest. The resort has been expanded with a small water park (indoors and outdoors) expansion with a few new slides. A new complex of log cabin and wig-wam accommodation has been built. The car park between Air and ATH has been turned into a nighttime entertainment complex. The park has broken the 4 million visitor barrier.
Becomes the biggest park in Britain, with a steady 5 million visitors. A large hotel has been built, and a waterpark. The park's infrastructure has been completely overhauled, with multiple boats taking visitors straight from the hotel to the park. LC12 and LC15 are both well recieved. SAW's sponsorship runs out, and is rethemed to generic horror. We have said goodbye to No Way Out, SAW: Alive, Quantum and Zodiac. In place of No Way Out, a new multi-million pound dark ride similar to Spiderman and DarKastle is built. We say goodbye to Ranger County and Neptune's Kingdom.
Chessington's visitor numbers remain stable. A new rapids ride, similar to River Quest, is built to acclaim. We say goodbye to the Runaway Train, Tomb Blaster and ToyTown. A new shooting dark ride is built on the Tomb Blaster site, similar to the dark ride at LDC.
Lightwater Valley is now the second most popular non-Merlin park in the UK, behind Drayton. A mid-sized GCI woodie opposite Eagle's Claw starts to get them noticed on the international stage. Visitor numbers climb steadily, as they begin to build up a collection of permanent flat-rides, a mix of thrill and family. We say goodbye to the Rapids, the Ladybird and the Twister. A family spinning coaster is built. The Ultimate is overhauled with new trains and a more coherent theme. A small holiday village is opened.
By far the biggest winner in the last 10 years. The new hotel and coaster begins a turnaround in the park's fortunes. The park adds a mine train with Th13teen style drop, themed to a popular IP. The park also adds a thrill coaster, a launched shuttle from MACK. We say goodbye to G-Force and Pirate Adventure. A new IP-based dark-ride opens on Pirate Adventure's site, and a few new thrill flats are built.
Blackpool Pleasure Beach
Visitor numbers slightly decline over 10 years, but profit margins increase. A second hotel, or an extension to the Big Blue is opened. We say goodbye to Steeplechase, Revolution, the Chinese Puzzle Maze, the park railway, Grand Prix, and the Eddie Stobart Convoy. A new launched Eurofighter coaster opens on the Steeplechase site to lukewarm reviews for lack of theming. Goldmine and possibly Alice is rethemed to IP. The trains on the Dipper and the Nash are replaced, and the Mouse is refurbished.
Camelot, Oakwood and Fantasy Island
Now Alton I agree with, but as I said, there's no way Thrope will get ahead of it, there's too much work that needs doing and probably not enough room, they can't fill in that lake forever. I can't see Drayton doing much, I really can't see them getting that Blue Fire-type-thingy. I hope the new hotel isn't as big a mistake as I think it will be. If it works, they'll improve a fair bit, and probably get half way to where Thorpe is now, they'll be the biggest none-Merlin park after BPP.
I have a horrible feeling one of the classics goes from Blackpool, probably Dipper. Irn Bru's fate is probably sealed, unfortunately, and Steeplechase is on borrowed time. Irn Bru won't be replaced but there'll be somethingg like a Eurofighter on it's site, and hopefully something going in the Space Invader building, a museum or something. I expect the visitor numbers to go down.
LWV will struggle at first, and then start to grow, hopeully with a woodie and some new flats. I don't know what you mean about 'more coherent theme' as it has zero theme, and that is the best thing for it in my view. Hopefully they'll leave it alone and just get new trains that wear better. Flamingoland will keep getting bigger, and possibly begin to challenge Drayton.
Sadly, I agree, Camelot, Fantasy Island and Oakwood will all close. :(