TR - Clacton Blues
It’s been a long time since I’ve been to Clacton, or done a TR, for that matter. And yet last night I found myself with a touch of the winter blues, so I decided to arrange a little jaunt to this seaside town that has so accompanied me throughout my life.
Much has changed over the past few years , not least of which the erection of wind turbines that line the horizon like a row of sentries. They provide a constant background on the stretch of coast that takes you towards the pier.
I zig-zagged down to the lower promenade and walked by the sea as the waves gently lulled. Taking a detour to the beach, I descended a sizeable flight of steps and made contact with the hard, wet sand. Amongst the many curiosities on display was a rarity in the form of a complete oyster shell.
A lot of work is being carried out on the Pavilion - the vast building opposite the pier that so used to entrance me. Once helmed by a Laughing Clown, it used to contain such fixtures as Disco Scooters and a Bucking Bronco. Now it’s an empty shell.
Work, too, is afoot on the pier. Santa’s Grotto has appeared, surrounded by Christmas trees. To the right, the facade of the nightclub has been completely removed, resulting in a unique sight – a completely bare Haunted Mansion ghost train. Robbed of two walls, it is now possible to view the exposed track and features.
Emerging into the outdoor section, I am surprised by, to my right, a trio of powered paragliders rising up from the sand. I reach for my camera, hoping I can catch them before they soar overhead in search of a new section of beach. The battery runs out. Score one to the paragliders.
Leaving the pier, I take a closer, elevated view of the work on the Pavilion. In my childhood, it had a large outdoor section, walled on all four sides and home to the terrifying Chamber of Horrors. To my astonishment, this has been entirely roofed over. On top is being built a Family Entertainment Centre. Whether the complex spans both the sea level of the Pavilion and the high level of the promenade remains to be seen.
In Pier Avenue, too, the road is being narrowed. Elsewhere, CJ from Eggheads is appearing in panto.
One thing’s for sure, Clacton may change throughout the years, but it always matches my soul.
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Anyone who has followed your posts as religiously as I have over the last 10 years or so know that your TRs cry out for wider readership and more responses than you have had.
I'm not sure why the people who post appear to have deserted URC Europe over the last year or so because it remains in my humble opinion one of the most important coaster / theme park / amusement park boards out there.
It's possible that like many you are fustrated a little with what this fair isle of ours has dealt us enthusiasts recently.
The Link Below directs all to an article written over 4 years ago. It was the first in what I hoped was going to be a seaside Trilogy of articles for themagiceye from the brilliant coaster mind of the wonderfully descriptive Mr Cassidy! :-)
Hey..Graeme..There's time yet for the other two! :-)
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Thank you Gary, your comments mean a huge amount to me. It is absolutely true to say that Clacton Chronicles and the Magic Eye were foremost in my mind as I was strolling through Clacton.
It is indeed sad to see this forum deserted, as no other coaster board will ever feel like "home" to me.
Personally, I would not currently describe myself as frustrated. I was a few years ago, massively so, but sadly my passion has left me. This might be because of the state of the coaster scene, but I have also not ridden a coaster for over two years - the time it has taken my neck to heal from riding Klondike. Please, please, no one underestimate the dangers of a low-quality coaster with OTSRs.
Since then, I have forgotten the thrill of coasters. Yes, I would love a new wooden coaster, but I'm sorry to say that, though I spent years pining for another B&M, I'm not even sure I'd ride one nowadays.
I probably would though... ;)
PS - This might be helpful to some: you can now post IMG tags in here, not just HTML.