g'day

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ozz

g'day

Post by ozz » Tue Sep 23, 2003 8:16 pm

Ok thenworked at WSP for 5+ years on security ,so got to see all the parts of the park and definatly got to know about the live onsite staff(eg mitch ,spike terry,steve,Phill,,to ring some bells) ,met my wife (who worked there) some 14 years ago,and lets not forget cardiac hillI still see lez (worked on babbonsor elephants) as he lives opposite the inlaws and to this day he still calls steve (a flat mate who worked on elephants ,sister was with doliphns ,i worked with ray ,little richard (only worked nights ) carol ,mitch , spike (aka paul) and my ever favourit boss man mr nutkinsalso doing a search on friends reunited will find phill who has a cd or 2 of pictures[/img]

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old pals

Post by soniareilly » Tue Sep 23, 2003 9:07 pm

Great to hear Les is still going strong next time you see him say HI from sonia
Hi Sonia here,you will remember me as Sonia Hall, I was an employee and ranger at the park form 1983 untill 1990. Am still mad about animals and would love to hear form any of the gang from the park

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i have phills msn if you get in touch ill give it to you

Post by staffbarshaz » Wed Sep 24, 2003 6:04 pm

hi heard from mitch not long ago too!! he tried to chat me up :shock: he running his own detective agency!!phil is also about spoke to him recently and he on about doing a reunionlost touch with anita but she did marry nick and i went to their wedding.they have a couple of kids at the last count.i moved up north with one of the contractors called scotty but we not together now although his sister is now my best friend and i still see scott and tom/alison quite ofteni think i remember you ....did you have blonde hair i think i got some pics of you somewhere in the top bar with me and lorry and others (time is erasing my memory)anyway get back to me and we will have a nattercant believe you remember me in the bath incident :oops:pswho did you marry ?? and why wasnt it me lollolshaz x

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hi

Post by OZ » Wed Sep 24, 2003 10:40 pm

yes spoke to phil a few months ago ,how is alison , and yes i remeber scotty we were all gutted , yes unfortuantly i got pissed one night and ended up with bleach blond hair,have a large bird tatooed on each arm (feathered type0i married lisa lea from rides then lodge , when you see a pic it will all come back to you,things like sleeping on the tabogan ride,quetly getting steve and gunner to get a dumster to recover mitch and spike who had put the sierra on the mansion lawn while pissed one night ,im sure you and alison remember spike :D

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Re: i have phills msn if you get in touch ill give it to you

Post by Guest » Wed Aug 18, 2004 5:25 pm

I think i remember you Shaz, we're you from wigan way or something. and I remember Oz, I wonder if you can remember seduce me ?

Guest

shaz

Post by Guest » Wed Aug 18, 2004 10:19 pm

Or did you work at the American Adventure?
Seduce me :?:

spike

Re: g'day

Post by spike » Thu Sep 04, 2008 9:13 pm

Hi all,

bit late in joining this forum, but great to read some of the stories that are posted. I worked at the park between 89-91 an dgot the nickname Spike due to the fact that we had 2 Paul's on the security team and I had extremely spikey hair at the time. I lived at the park for the 2 years and had a fantastic time. The story of myself and Mitch parking the car on the mansion lawn is very true, what many people didn't realise is that it happened on Christmas day and only because Mitch wanted to see if it would fit down the toboggan run!!!

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Re: g'day

Post by falkor » Sat Dec 20, 2008 11:12 am

jesus spike - you worked there in the last years of the park's operation

did you get any video or photos from that era?

that toboggan run is so new that many people have no knowledge of it all

I went down it many times I am glad to say :mrgreen:

:D any other stuff you can remember spike?

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Re: g'day

Post by spike » Fri Jul 03, 2009 7:52 pm

Hi Falkor,

Apologies for taking so long to reply, I plan to keep involved with the forums going forward and can hopefully trace some of the others through facebook and point them in the right direction too.

Yes I have many, many great memories of the park, unfortunately no photo's. They have got lost somewhere along the way in the last 20 years.
I worked there in the era of Themes International, which unfortunately spelt the end for the park. Working on the security team we could see sooner than most others what was happening as the hire companies came to claim back their equipment that hadn't been paid for.

Many of the staff I remember well came from either the American Adventure (also no more) or Camelot.
Some of the newer colleagues I remember are; Ray, Carol, Richard, Matt, Paul, Roy, Oz, Mitch and Nita, all of which worked with me in the security team. Mitch, Oz and myself were the youngest of the team and always upto something we shouldn't be, much to Paul's disgust most of the time.
Matt Titherington, Audrey Hatton, Amanda Penhallow, Jackie from the cash office, Bob (seduce me) Kudesjki, Mark Etches, Dean Hogan, Phil Gilbert, Steve Richards, Alison Martin, Cathy Windermere, Billy Kane, Lawrence, Jill, Staffbarshaz, Anita, Jeanne, Gemma and many many more.
Some of the old guard that had been there years that I remember well were; Clubby, Gunner, Steve, Penny and Dave from the Dolphinarium, the curator whose name escapes me but I believe it was something like Paul O'Donaghue, Dave and Spam from birds of prey.
Sad to hear the passing of David Taylor, one story I can kick off with was one winters evening where nothing stirred not even a mouse.....................and then whilst sat in a cold security box at the main gate I answered a call from David Taylor!!!
'Hi David Taylor Here, whom am I talking to?'
'Hi David it's Spike on security'
'Hi Spike got a bit of an issue I'm afraid. Just picked a stranded dolphin up from the Thames in London and need to bring it into the park. The dolphins not in a good way, I will need a couple of the dolphinarium staff, temporary security lights, a large stretcher of some description, a segregated area in the main pool and a fork lift truck with harnesses to lift the dolphin from the truck. We'll be about half an hour!'................and with that David was gone.
Now whilst this type of thing was pretty much an everyday occurence in his life, I can assure you that in mine it certainly was not!!!
However as was always the case, the staff all rallied round and with help from maintenance, animal staff, dolphinarium staff and security, we had everything in place for the arrival. Unfortunately despite the hours spent by Penny, in the pool with the dolphin, the poor thing was too badly injured to see the night out.

Just one of so, so many wonderful stories I could tell. It was a wonderful place to work and I was also fortunate enough to live on site for 2 years, great times! :D

Spike

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Re: g'day

Post by Sas » Sat Jul 04, 2009 10:48 am

Such a good story Spike thanks for sharing got any more ? lol
Regards
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Re: g'day

Post by falkor » Sun Jul 05, 2009 4:21 pm

yeah I love that too 8)

Spike did you get use of the mansion house at all?

what was going on in the last month of operation in 1992? can you tell us?

all the public knew was TV cameras at the gates and that was it, GAME OVER :3

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Re: g'day

Post by spike » Sun Jul 05, 2009 6:20 pm

Unfortunately I left the park in '91, the year before it closed.
It was clear then however that the owners, Themes International were having difficulties. Many of the senior level of management were going their seperate ways and as previously posted, the security team were handling a lot of early morning and after hours calls from contractors and hire companies demanding money.
A huge amount of money was being poured into the new Morrocan/Egyptian type area.

I certainly did get the use of the mansion house:
a) The staff canteen was situated in there
b) The staff bar was in the cellar
c) Many functions took place in there at night (Foxhunters ball, Oxford/Cambridge ball)
d) I lived on the 2nd floor for 3 months and then the 1st floor for 18 months.

The staff that lived in the mansion house did a huge amount of research into the old house as we had numerous reportings from staff and public alike that they had seen strange goings on. We found that at some point the house had been occupied by a family named Harrison and that old man Harrison had committed suicide in one of the bathrooms.
Hence the staff Bar became known as 'Harry's Bar' with a strap on slogan of 'we serve spirits'
A sign was designed by one of the sign writers on the park and hung behind the bar from then on.

I'm sure like many have as many stories from the couple of years that I spent at the park as I have from the rest of my life. Luckily I spent my 2 years in the security department so got to see a lot more of the park and the life than many others.

Spike

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Re: g'day

Post by spike » Sun Jul 05, 2009 6:53 pm

When visting theme parks nowadays, with my daughters, I do often wonder if the security is as laid back as we were.
Don't get me wrong, if we needed to be a force then we certainly were. I'm talking more about driving round the park, after 17,000 people had visited on a bank holiday monday, in a battered old sierra collecting the days takings and dropping them off at the cash office. Even in those day's we were talking about £200,000 worth of notes and £100,000 worth of coins. Never did a penny go missing but how we never got held up??? Can't see that happening nowadays.
We used to desperately try to get it done before the cash office had all gone home so that we could shove a trolley with all the sealed bags on through the door and clear off to the bar. If our timing was out it could take another hour posting the 100's of sealed bags through the nightsafe, which took 2 at a time!

Couple of other funnies for you:
The head of the birds of prey at the time was a guy called John. I recieved a call in security asking if one of our birds was missing. I asked the caller if they could describe it. They told me that it had a big white head a yellow beak was about 3ft tall and was sat on their garden fence. By the time myself and John could get round to the house, on St Leonards Hill, 'Margaret the bald Eagle' was now 50ft up an oak tree in the middle of the street. After about 2 hours of 'Margaret' watching a very irate John throw chicks up in the air trying to coax her down, a helpful member of the public came out of their house, walked straight upto John and said 'can it fly?'
Fair play to John, his reply was 'do you see a ladder!' it was priceless.

Another moment of huge amusement was one particular Sunday when the call came to the security team to get round to the chimpanzee enclosure asap. Not sure what the chimp enclosure was like at the time you worked there but in my time it had small indoor pens with a very large outdoor enclosure surrounded by a brick wall with observation windows. There was no form of netting or roof whatsoever.
On arrival at the chimp house we could not believe our eyes. A member of the public had clearly bought a sack full of potato's, from one of these sellers in a lay bay, and had then decided to throw a few over to the chimps. By the time we arrived the was a crowd of around 50 people in all out war with 6 chimps. Trying not to get caught in the crossfire, we decide the easiest option was to keep ushering the crowd backwards until they were out of distance of the barrage being hurled back from Rodney (dominant male chimp) and co.

Spike

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Re: g'day

Post by falkor » Mon Aug 17, 2009 10:24 pm

this is priceless

THANK YOU SPIKE!!! superb read, miss those days so much :mrgreen:

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