They may be coaster crazy but they like a fairground ride too!
The Roller Coaster Club of Great Britain (RCCGB) has been visiting Pembrokeshire since 1996, the year our local theme park Oakwood opened its world famous wooden rollercoaster – Megafobia. In 2008 they began including us in their Oakwood event.
Ahead of this year's visit we caught up with the club’s chairman, Andy Hine MBE, to find out why they swap G-forces for our Golden Gallopers.
Q&A with Andy Hine MBE of the RCCGB
Q: How long has the RCCGB been going?
A: The RCCGB was formed in August 1988 and is looking forward to some 30th anniversary celebrations next year.
Q: Ooh Folly Farm will be 30 next year too, we’ll have to plan something special for your next visit. So, how many trips do you do each year?
A: The RCCGB has around 6 events each year, including a USA trip that visits on average 15 parks in one 16 day holiday!
Q: Wow. That’s intense! Oakwood is a very popular visit for your members each year, what’s the best ride and why?
A: Oakwood has been on our calendar of events since 1996 – the year they opened MegaFobia. The Club supports wooden coasters and MegaFobia is the best example in the UK.
Q: You kindly include Folly Farm on your club visit to Pembrokeshire, why is that?
A: We began to include Folly Farm on our programme of events in 2008 and have been visiting every year since. This was to support the investment Folly Farm was making and to give my members an additional day of fun when visiting Wales. The Park looks after us so well and members really enjoy our day there.
Q: What’s the appeal of the vintage fairground to rollercoaster enthusiasts?
A: The vintage fairground is one of our highlights as it brings back memories for the older members and creates new ones for the younger members. Plus everyone of any age can enjoy the rides.
Q: What’s your favourite fairground ride at Folly Farm?
A: I have always liked Waltzers and Folly Farm’s is a good example of one. You can get the car spinning very fast!
Q: Is that the same for all club members?
A: A lot of members like the Waltzer but the Twister is also very popular. Due to the comradery in the club we all enjoy a session on the Dodgems!
Q: What else do you like about Folly Farm?
A: Folly Farm has a great team who look after everyone well. Plus it is always clean and tidy and offers a fabulous day out, with both educational and thrilling attractions.
Q: You have a lot of experience visiting attractions, how do you think we compare?
A: It is difficult to compare Folly Farm to the usual venues we visit – some that have 14-16 roller coasters that reach speeds of 130mph and heights of 420ft! So I would say that it offers a different experience and a more chilled and relaxed day that we have at some venues.
Q: What's your favourite rollercoaster in the world?
A: My favourite roller coaster in the world is called The Phoenix. It’s a wooden coaster based at Knoebels in Pennsylvania. It’s fun from start to finish and all you want to do at the end is get back on again! It offers so much ‘airtime’ – the feeling of weightlessness as you travel around the layout. Every park should have one!