Monico Leisure has transformed the Canvey Island coastline into a new family entertainment destination with the help of its local authority, demonstrating the power of operators and councils working together.
Electrocoin’s John Stergides snr visited the seaside resort earlier this month to meet with Monico Leisure owners Derek and Suzanne Gray, reporting back to Coinslot that the operator has succeeded in bringing new life – and business – to the area.
“With support from the local authority, their efforts have changed the seaside area into a new family entertainment destination for Londoners, only 40 minutes away from the capital,” said Stergides. “It feels like the good old days of the 80’s and 90’s, and proves that when businesses and local authorities work together, they can achieve the best for all.”
Monico Leisure has been investing heavily in its amusements over the last 12 months, putting £100,000 of improvements into Fantasy Island Canvey fun park last June, installing a new 18-hole mini golf course, a 20-seat carousel ride, and a go-kart track.
The operator also owns The Monico, a pub on Canvey’s Eastern Esplanade, as well as seafront restaurant Jimmy Mac’s, which will also undergo significant investment. And their work in the community won local honours in March with Monico lifting the Best Community Contribution award.
It’s vitally important, however, that the facilities of operators on Canvey Island are accessible, and that’s where the council has played an important role, ensuring plentiful low-cost parking is available to all visitors.
“Free parking in the afternoon keeps visitors relaxed in the knowledge they do not have worry about penalties and fines, which leads to them staying longer to enjoy the resort’s many entertainment options,” continued Stergides. “Combined with the great weather and plentiful food options, Canvey Island is buzzing this summer.”
Stergides applauded the local council for listening to the needs of operator, noting that there are other councils across the South East that would do well to copy its approach.
“I have to congratulate the local council for their efforts and open-mind approach to business,” he added. “They are aiming to make the seafront one of the best attractions near to London, achieving the best for businesses, residents and visitors alike.”
While stationed in one of the Britain’s smaller seaside resorts, Canvey Island business owners – including five arcades and two fairs – have carved out a model for success that many larger resorts across the country would do well to emulate – serving as a shining example of how successful seaside resorts can be if local authorities work with operators, rather than against them.