AN auction of quirky Charlie and the Chocolate Factory ride theming, staged by Alton Towers, has attracted thousands of bids and raised over £10,700 for charity. The Oompa-lump sum of cash was raised by Alton Towers Resort as it auctioned off items from its former Charlie and the Chocolate Factory ride to make way for its latest attraction, the Alton Towers Dungeon, which opens next month. Both theme park and Roald Dahl fans jumped at the chance to get their hands on some golden memorabilia, raising £10,781, which will now be split between two UK charities.
The auction attracted a total of 1,471 bids as fans battled it out to own the bespoke theming.
With a starting price of just 99p and no reserve, the 37 choco-lots included five Oompa Loompas, giant inflatable blueberries, squirrels, a chocolate covered Augustus Gloop and other life-size characters, as well as quirky signage including ‘The Inventing Room’ and ‘Juicing Room’.
The final bids saw an Oompa Lumpa go for a whopping £1,000, followed by a giant chocolate covered Augustus Gloop raising £620. Entrance signage was also in high demand, raising £510.
The Charlie and Chocolate Factory ride, formerly situated in Cloud Cuckoo Land, closed at the end of the 2015 season to make way for new attractions within the theme park.
Kate McBirnie, who headed up the auction at Alton Towers Resort, said: “We are absolutely thrilled with the success of the auction and overwhelmed by the interest the ride memorabilia attracted.
“We are now really looking forward to learning about where the items will go to and be homed from the winning bidders.”
Monies raised from the auction will go to Merlin’s Magic Wand, a children’s charity that supports children facing challenges of serious illness, disability or adversity, and Roald Dahl’s Marvellous Children’s Charity that funds Roald Dahl Specialist Children’s Nurses in communities across the UK.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory ride opened at Alton Towers Resort in 2006. It was based on the famous Roald Dahl book of the same name, and took its thematic inspiration from the illustrations of Quentin Blake.
Within the attraction, riders would experience both a boat ride along the chocolate river inside Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory, encountering all the book’s characters such as Augustus Gloop and Veruca Salt. Following the chocolate boat adventure, guest would then enter the ‘Great Glass Elevators’, taking them on a simulated airborne trip through the rest of the factory.
We are the only family run, independent newspaper and magazine business in Staffordshire, established 1896. We are home to three weekly newspapers – The Cheadle and Tean Times (aka The Stunner), The Uttoxeter Echo and The Blythe and Forsbrook Times.
We also produce Peeps into the Past, a bi-monthly nostalgic glimpse into our photographic archives, and three bi-monthly glossy lifestyle magazines – Stone and Eccleshall Life, Leek Life and Newcastle Life.
T. 01538 752214 or 753162
18 Tape Street, Cheadle, Staffs ST10 1BD
T. 01889 562479
5 Church Street, Uttoxeter, Staffs ST14 8AG (Uttoxeter Office is a postal address only)