Continuum signs 10-year deal with ITV

We’re pleased to announce that our ongoing partnership with ITV continues to go from strength to strength. Following the signing of a new 10-year agreement, Continuum Attractions will continue to be the operator of ITV visitor attractions across the UK… Soon to include I’m A Celebrity… Jungle Challenge, a new attraction set to open this summer.

Joining Coronation Street The Tour and Emmerdale The Village Tour, the upcoming I’m A Celebrity… Jungle Challenge offers an opportunity for fans of the much loved TV show to enjoy a hands-on and interactive themed experience.

On behalf of Continuum Attractions, our CEO, Juliana Delany, is excited for this next step in our partnership with ITV.

“I’m thrilled that we have brokered this new, long-term working relationship with ITV,”

“ITV’s IPs and brands are much-loved and real crowd pleasers, and the Continuum team are really looking forward to opening the doors on the Jungle Challenge.”

The £7 million I’m a Celebrity… Jungle Challenge is launching this summer within the Quayside Shopping Centre at MediaCityUK, Manchester.”

“It will be a totally new and utterly amazing 90-minute, jungle-themed, actioned-packed activity challenge for all the family to enjoy,”

“From climbing walls to the premium event – Europe’s first ceiling-mounted Spyrider – it’s going to be super awesome and hugely popular, of that I’m certain.”

“This new arrangement with ITV helps to propel the company forward into a brighter future, we have several other leisure attraction concepts in shopping centres in the pipeline – it’s an expanding market for us.”

Further information about this exciting new addition to our portfolio will be coming soon!

Improving the lives of Scottish children – The Real Mary King’s Close supports Cash for Kids as its Charity Partner

The ghostly story of the young girl Annie and her lost doll is just one of the many stories shared at leading Edinburgh visitor attraction The Real Mary King’s Close, and is the main reason why the attraction has chosen to support Cash for Kids in 2020.

In the 1990s, a Japanese psychic visited the attraction and told of feeling the ‘presence’ of a child’s unhappy ghost, whom she pacified with a real toy doll. Since then, visitors to the Close have brought hundreds of gifts for Annie, mainly toys, sweets, letters, children’s jewellery, and money.

Whilst the attraction has temporarily closed as part of the preventative measures against the spread of COVID-19, prior to closing their doors the team at The Real Mary King’s Close added up the donations in Annie’s Room, and presented a cheque for £2,000 to the Cash for Kids Charity this week.

Paul Nixon, General Manager, says

“We’re delighted to be working with Cash for Kids this year, a charity benefitting children in and around Edinburgh, the Lothians, Fife and Falkirk. We’ve an abundance of fascinating stories that relate to the very people who lived and walked these streets, most notably the story of the child Annie, and it felt very fitting to choose Cash for Kids, a charity we can not only fundraise for, but also engage with on a deeper level.

“Being able to present an initial sum of money at the beginning of a new campaign has been extremely joyful, and we know it will be used to help children in need right now during this challenging time.”

The partnership runs for one year from March 2020. The Real Mary King’s Close is part of a group of eight attractions run by tourism specialists Continuum Attractions, whose commitment is to create engaging experiences with purpose for visitors to enjoy. Charity partnerships have been a core part of the organisation for over ten years, with the Group raising over £100,000 during that time. The driving vision for these partnerships is to create people-focused, interactive opportunities that bring staff teams together to have a positive impact on society.

Ian Robertson, Corporate Fundraising Manager, Cash for Kids, says

“What an amazing way to start the new campaign, a donation of this size is fantastic. We’re so pleased to have The Real Mary King’s Close on board as a charity partner, and the positive feedback so far has been great. Our aim is to respond to the needs of children, and this is a really important time to work together, as we all feel the impact of the current climate. We’re definitely looking forward to developing this relationship over the year ahead.”

To find out more and support online: www.forth1.com/appeal

A Polite Reassurance For Our Attraction Guests regarding Covid-19 (Coronavirus)

The safety and wellbeing of you, our guests, and our team is our priority and we will take all necessary precautions to ensure everyone’s continued welfare.

As you plan your visit to us we want to assure you that we are actively monitoring the situation with regards to Covid-19 (Coronavirus) and are reviewing and following the guidelines of Public Health England.  The advice from the health authorities has not changed, so our attractions are operating as normal and standard terms and conditions on bookings continue to apply.

So firstly, we will welcome all our guests with a warm smile, rather than a handshake!

During your visit, we wish to reassure you that we are taking all possible steps to minimise risk, including the implementation of enhanced cleaning regimes.

We ask you to observe high standards of personal hygiene. There are simple things you can do to help prevent the spread of the virus, including:

  • Covering your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
  • Putting used tissues in the bin immediately
  • Washing your hands with soap and hot water regularly, or using hand sanitiser gel
  • Avoiding touching your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean.

We have placed additional hand sanitisers at the entrance and in convenient locations for guests, and we politely ask that you use them regularly.

We want to welcome everyone to our attractions with a warm smile and the reassurance that we have your health in mind, so you can enjoy time with your friends and family.

From the history of chocolate to dining in the sky, Continuum Attractions continues to innovate & grow in 2020

‘Giant’ family-fun with a sustainable focus in Wales, chocolate Masterclasses in York and The Plague in Edinburgh, 2020 will again be a big year for Continuum Attractions, as we continue to invest in our nine award-winning attractions, our people, and our vision to create compelling new reasons to visit.

Highlights for 2020 include:

Yorkshire – York’s Chocolate Story

  • February – Launch of new late-night tours with prosecco and expert Chocolatiers

North Wales – Greenwood Family Park

  • Spring – Investment in and launch of Giant Quest, a new addition to the sustainability-focused family park, which will include climbing routes across different levels, bouncing nets, a tower and slide.

Chief Executive Juliana Delaney says;

“I’m incredibly proud of our attractions, which contribute a great deal to the UK tourism offer. We bring the attractions together under a vision of purpose; whether that’s imaginatively bringing ‘hidden’ stories to life at The Real Mary King’s Close in Edinburgh, preserving the fabric and history of Oxford Castle & Prison, encouraging a love for everything sustainable at Greenwood Family Park in Wales, or sharing the history and love of chocolate in York, the Group goes from strength to strength in proving that it can effectively run and lead engaging and successful attractions, with motivated and experienced people at the helm and using emerging digital technology.”


The story doesn’t end here…

Find out more about our other innovative attraction businessess  with our attraction case studies or see more recent news from across our attractions on our blog page.

Hankies at the ready, the plague returns to Edinburgh for the first time in over 370 years

It has been a bumper year for our award-winning Edinburgh visitor attraction, The Real Mary King’s Closeas over a quarter of a million people visited, the attraction won a handful of awards, and we announce plans for new investment in 2020.

Must-do attraction

Right in the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town and underneath the streets of the bustling Royal Mile, The Real Mary King’s Close has long been included on the ‘must-do’ list of any Edinburgh visit and is working hard to keep that the case in the coming year.

A great year!

“It has been a great year for The Real Mary King’s Close, as we ended the year with awards, including winner of ‘Best for Big Kids in Scotland’ said Paul Nixon, General Manager.

‘In 2019 we launched a new gin tasting tour and our family-friendly tours, and we’ve plenty of new ways to try and ensure we retain an important spot on peoples’ wish-list for any Edinburgh visit.’

Planned investment

There is a planned investment of over £100K in several key areas of the attraction this spring, including an extension to The Plague story and a reinterpretation of Mary Queen of Scots’ visit. Digital technology will form a large part of the reinterpretation, working with set designers and talented Guest Experience Managers to create a highly appealing and quality experience for visitors.

The Plague Room at The Real Mary king's Close - a Plague Doctor in long black hidden cloak and 'beak' tends to his boil-covered patient
Visitors to the Close already visit the popular Plague room where they discover Dr Rae, boils and ‘miasmas’

Full details will be announced in early 2020, with new photography and assets available.

The story doesn’t end here…

Find out more about our history with The Real Mary King’s Close in our case study here or see more recent news from across our attractions on our blog page.

Double Silver at The Beautiful South Awards

We are truly celebrating the season of awards here at Continuum Attractions – with another win for two of our beautiful attractions in the Tourism South East ‘Beautiful South Awards.’

The Clouds Café at 105m high on the second viewing deck of Spinnaker Tower in Portsmouth received silver for ‘Café/Tearoom of the Year’, whilst Oxford Castle & Prison is celebrating a silver for ‘Small Visitor Attraction of the Year’.

“We’re heading towards our best year yet for celebrating successes as these beautiful accolades come swiftly on the heels of our hat trick of recognition” says Juliana Delaney, our Chief Executive, referring to our triple win at the British Travel Awards last month.

“We’re thrilled that both attractions are able to celebrate this recognition for the contribution they make to the tourism offering in the south and we’re very proud of the teams working behind the scenes to ensure the best quality, innovative and purposeful visitor experiences.”

Organised by Tourism South East, the Beautiful South Awards recognise and celebrate the achievements for businesses and professionals in the tourism industry over 18 months. This year saw 40% more entries across 23 categories, with an awards ceremony held at the Grand Brighton on the 10th December, and was hosted by Simon Calder, travel journalist and broadcaster.

Oxford Castle & Prison collect their award: Laurie Byrne, Marketing Manager; Chris Abbot, General Manager; Olivia Scammel, PR Manager

The story doesn’t end here…

Why not visit one of our  attractions and see for yourself how we create award-winning visitor experiences, take your pick here.

Or, if you’re looking for attraction expertise to turn your idea or attraction into an award-winner, why not find out more about collaborating with us?

 

An awards hatrick for our attractions!

We were delighted to receive British Travel Awards at two of our leading visitor attractions this week.

York’s Chocolate Story claimed Silver in the Best Leisure Attraction and Bronze in the Best Heritage Attraction, whilst Emirates Spinnaker Tower in Portsmouth took home Bronze in the Best Leisure Attraction.

Our CEO, Juliana Delaney comments;

This is a fantastic way to approach the end of the year and we’re delighted with the recognition of two of our attractions, by the visiting public themselves.

“York Chocolate Story has gone from strength to strength this year and has seen the history and heritage of chocolate presented and explained in the most creative ways. Its recognition is well deserved for the team who work relentlessly to connect people with the stories and many benefits of chocolate. And Emirates Spinnaker Tower has truly established itself as a ‘must see’ on the south coast, from Afternoon Tea to abseiling, it stands as a beacon for the sector. This is a great achievement for everyone involved.”

The British Travel Awards are the largest consumer awards in the UK. Over 400,000 Brits cast over 860,000 votes for every category of travel, and a gala dinner was held in London this week, attended by over 1,000 people from the travel industry.

The story doesn’t end here…

Why not visit one of our  attractions and see for yourself how we create award-winning visitor experiences, take your pick here.

Or, if you’re looking for attraction expertise to turn your idea or attraction into an award-winner, why not find out more about collaborating with us?

 

 

Introducing Star Wars Secrets of The Empire

Continuum Attractions are delighted to announce a partnership with USA- based start-up, The VOID, to bring a Star Wars TM  themed, hyper-reality experiences to the UK, opening in London in December 2017.

Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire, the highly anticipated hyper-reality experience produced in collaboration with Lucasfilm and ILMxLAB, will launch at Westfield, London in December and is available for pre-booking at www.thevoid.com.

“The guest experience will blow your mind,’ said Kevin Smith, Group Attractions Director at Continuum Attractions, who recently travelled to The VOID headquarters in Utah.  ‘We expect guests to visit because they love the Star Wars brand and leave having experienced something absolutely brand new.

This is an experience that everyone will be thrilled by. Forget virtual reality or even augmented reality, Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire opens up the new immersive world of hyper-reality with touch, sounds and smells. This will be the must-do event this Christmas and in 2018.”

Continuum Attractions will operate the pop-up experience in  Westfield, Shepherd’s Bush.

Sarah Marsh, Chief Experience Officer of The VOID commented, ‘Continuum Attractions are our trusted operating partners for this exciting new adventure here in the UK. It has been a fast-paced design, build and development of the operation here in London, with a very short lead into the launch of tickets and opening date. Continuum Attractions was able to deliver this for us. There are now plans forming to take the attractions across Europe.’

The VOID is simultaneously opening Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire in Disney Springs at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando Florida.

Continuum Attractions previously operated the Emirates Cable Car in London, an exhibition for EMI and helped develop The Crystal, a Siemens brand attraction in London’s Royal Docks.

 

Lights Out for Earth Hour

March 25th marks the 10th anniversary of the WWF Earth Hour campaign, the world’s largest demonstration of support for action on climate change. The teams across our attractions will be joining in to raise awareness and take part in the ‘switch-off’ at 8.30pm. We’re challenging our teams to have not just an electric-light free hour – but an hour with no electricity at all! No lights, no computers, no TV…

The Tower goes dark

Throughout the year we light up Emirates Spinnaker Tower for various charities (most recently we went blue for World Water Day), but on March 25th Emirates Spinnaker Tower will go dark, as all non-essential lighting is turned off to mark Earth Day.

All our attraction’s websites will also feature a ‘black-out’ banner to raise awareness.

Our commitment to green

Across Continuum Attractions and our support office, we have been working hard to improve our commitment to fighting climate change. We now have a nominated Green Ambassador at each attraction, led by a central Green Champion. This committee work together to help us in this endeavour and come up with new green initiatives. We’re working to reduce the amount of energy we produce as well as buying less environmentally damaging goods and reducing or recycling waste wherever we can. You can find out more about our corporate social responsibility projects here.

Get Involved

There’s lots of ways to get involved in Earth Hour, including turning your lights off for an hour at 8.30pm on Saturday. For more information see: EarthHour.org.

Group Head of Sales & Marketing joins the team

We’re excited to announce the appointment of Jules Ozbek as our new Group Head of Sales & Marketing.

Ozbek joins us following four years with English Heritage as Marketing Manager for the North of England, having previously worked for Northern Film, Business and Enterprise North East and the National Railway Museum.

Juliana Delaney, our Chief Executive, comments:

“I’m thrilled to welcome Jules to take the helm of our sales and marketing division. Jules’ high level and very up to the minute marketing expertise coupled with real tourism experience will take Continuum’s marketing agenda onto a new improved level. Marketing is at the very heart of our business and vital for sustained growth – we are now better prepared to deliver growth than ever with Jules leading our great sales and marketing team.”

Jules Ozbek, Head of Sales & Marketing, said:

“It’s an exciting time to join Continuum and I’m looking forward to taking the lead of our brilliant, ever growing portfolio of commercial attractions.”

We also recently announced two new visitor experiences in partnership with ITV: Coronation Street On Tour in Glasgow and the Emmerdale Studio Experience in Leeds.

Emmerdale Studio Experience

We are pleased to announce our latest visitor attraction in partnership with ITV, the Emmerdale Studio Experience.

ITV’s Burley Road Studios in central Leeds will open to the public on 3 September 2016 to showcase a ‘behind the scenes’ guided tour of one of ITV’s best loved soaps. The 1,300 sqm attraction will be a unique chance to step into the world of television, with full scale set reconstructions, props, costumes and interactive experiences allowing guests to try their hand at TV-making.

The new visitor attraction will create 50 jobs in Leeds and looks to welcome 150,000 visitors in its first calendar year. Due to the anticipated demand, Ticketmaster UK has been appointed as the attraction’s preferred ticketing agent.

The attraction follows the resounding success of Coronation Street The Tour, which welcomed over 850,000 visitors to the home of Corrie and generated over £60m for Manchester’s economy in its 18 month run.

Our Chief Executive Juliana Delaney comments:

“We are thrilled to continue our partnership with ITV to give the public chance to discover the magic behind Emmerdale. Following the phenomenal feedback from Coronation Street The Tour, we recognise the fascination audiences’ feel when they go behind the scenes of their favourite shows. We’re confident we can replicate that unforgettable experience with the Emmerdale Studio Experience.”

Leader of Leeds City Council Councillor Judith Blake said:

“We are delighted to see these tours of the Emmerdale studios on Burley Road starting up, creating new jobs and attracting fans of the show from far and wide to Leeds to see where it is filmed offering a further insight alongside the external set tours at Harewood. Emmerdale is a much-loved Yorkshire institution which continues to go from strength to strength having recently been named Best Soap in the UK for the first time. We look forward to seeing fans and visitors alike take the chance to come to Leeds and enjoy the ‘behind the scenes’ Emmerdale experience along with all the other great attractions in our city.”

Andrew Parsons, Managing Director of Ticketmaster UK, added:

“We are excited to continue our relationship with Continuum Attractions and ITV and support the Emmerdale Studio Experience with our industry leading ticketing system, unrivalled marketing reach, and award winning Groups Team. Coronation Street The Tour was a roaring success, drawing thousands to the wonderful city of Manchester and I am sure we will see the same demand in Leeds with this announcement.”

Tours will run at the attraction 7 days a week from 10am – 5pm. Tickets now on general sale at www.ticketmaster.co.uk/emmerdale

Corrie on Tour: Street sets to tour UK

We are pleased to announce our plans to take Coronation Street’s iconic sets on tour around the UK, premiering at the SECC in Glasgow from 27th August 2016.

A bespoke 2000 sqm show dome – the biggest of its kind in the UK – will showcase iconic sets, props and costumes from the world’s longest-running TV soap opera.

The touring experience follows the resounding success of Coronation Street The Tour in Manchester, which welcomed over 850,000 visitors to the soap’s original Quay Street sets during its 18 month run.

Juliana Delaney, our Chief Executive comments:

“After we closed the doors to Coronation Street The Tour in December 2015, we recognised a huge unfulfilled demand from elsewhere in the UK. We’re thrilled to have the opportunity to take Corrie on tour to allow more fans to get closer to their favourite television show.”

Coronation Street On Tour will subsequently relocate to Belfast next spring, subject to planning permission.

In our 31-year history, we’ve worked with over 100 world-class attractions and currently operate several visitor experiences across the UK, including the Emirates Spinnaker Tower in Portsmouth and The Real Mary King’s Close in Edinburgh.

Find out how to get tickets. 

Want to be part of the story? We’re recruiting for a range of roles at the attraction – find out more.

EU Referendum – statement from our CEO

-Juliana Delaney (CEO, Continuum Attractions)

“On behalf of our industry and Continuum Attractions I have been clear that we should remain inside the EU; leaving the European Union was a sad decision that has the potential to damage our business, Britain’s economy and Europe’s stability. Democracy has given us a decision and we accept  and respect the majority vote.

“To quote Sir Richard Branson: ‘Now is not the time for further complaints and anger. Now is the time to come together as a nation and heal the wounds created by the divisive tone and aggressive rhetoric that has dominated this campaign. The UK and its amazing, resilient people have weathered many storms – with determination, resolve and sense of what is right. Those qualities will be needed over the testing months and years to come.’

“To put it in the words of the late Jo Cox, “’we are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us. It’s time to build on that as the UK navigates the choppy waters ahead.’

“The reason why tourism is so successful in this country, is because our country has so much to offer.  People come to Britain because of our extraordinary heritage, our beautiful landscapes, our great sporting events, our art, some of the finest museums in the world, and our music.

“All of these are why people come to visit Britain.  It was the case last week, it is the case this week, and it will be the case next week.”