The threat of severe weather over Easter weekend had little effect on the resolve of some operators who feel a bumper season is right round the corner.
Weather has been the word on the frozen lips of many venturing out over the last few weeks, with our third instalment of biting cold evolving into the Beast of the East(er) weekend.
But even the latest bout of bad weather has not been enough to deter the sturdy British holidaymaker. Some operators found many brave souls ventured out over the weekend which bodes well for business when the weather finally picks up.
“We had a severe weather forecast but it never really materialised, we just had a bit of rain overnight on the Sunday, so business was OK,” said Nick Brenner, owner of Grand Pier Teignmouth.
The arcade’s new Yellow Submarine from Harry Levy has been doing “really well” according to Brenner,and the ever popular two penny pushers are also helping business tick over.
“Easter is always a funny one,” said Brenner.
“You can spend all winter gearing up for it and then it can rain the whole time – it’s just the nature of the game though and we’re looking forward to the weather getting a little better.”
At the opposite end of the Britain, in Scotland, the weather even came as a shock to locals, but still tourists came out to amuse themselves.
Michael Morris Snr, of Beachcomber Amusements in Fife, said: “Even though it was scuba gear weather, a few people braved the conditions and came in to visit us.”
Morris said he hadn’t seen weather like it for 30 years: “The sea was coming over the sea wall, but people still came out and we’re looking forward to it all perking up a bit in the coming weeks.”
In many areas of the country the severe weather warning never actually materialised, leaving many staying indoors because of the forecast rather than the weather itself.
Ash Smart, director of Harbour Park in Littlehampton, said that while rain had kept some visitors away, some machines were still performing well.
“We’ve relocated our Sponge Bob pusher and that’s done really well over the weekend. Plus the usual suspects such as Jurassic Park and Batman are also doing well,” said Smart.
“It’s a strange time of year. You’ve got to be open, fully staffed and training all your seasonal workers, but being a seaside location means we’re affected by the rain.”
Smart is looking forward to the weather turning around in time for the May half term and feels when the temperature rises a bit more, the public will be out in droves.
“As you know, the weather can turn in a couple of weeks and when it does I’m fully expecting to have a busy week,” said Smart, adding: “I think the public are just desperate to get out – and when they do, we’ll be ready for them.”