Thorpe Park #IslandBeats 2015
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The cool kids at Thorpe Park invited myself and Miss A to one of their ‘Island Beats’ concerts. Finding a child free date in the Summer Holidays was a bit of stretch, but low and behold, the calendars aligned and I was able to see Rixton at Thorpe Park #IslandBeats!


Arriving in the morning we collected our passes and headed on park for some rides. Something that is heavily advertised at the park entrance is ‘Reserve ‘N Ride’. Looking at it, it was a website you could visit on your phone and book a time slot to ride one of the five main roller-coasters. Fasttrack is nothing new, but this implementation is GENIUS and best of all FREE. After a quick registration process and having a QR code scanned by a member of staff I was ready to book a slot on The Swarm.

Reserve 'N Ride in Action
Reserve ‘N Ride in Action

Whilst the countdown to our ride ticked down we entertained ourselves on some of the smaller rides! When our time came we headed to The Swarm and had my phone scanned and we were in the Reserve ‘N Ride queue, which was about 20 minutes long. Once you’ve taken your reservation you’re able to book a slot on another coaster. For the smaller rides you’re also able to buy Fasttrack tickets if you like, but I think it’s fantastic to get something for nothing. Days out to theme parks aren’t cheap, and at least with this system you get a fair punt of getting the largest rides covered with no extra cost.

It’s worth pointing out that despite getting VIP access to the Thorpe Park #IslandBeats concert, we did the theme park exactly as the general public would – no queue jumping or special treatment. For a summer holiday weekend the Reserve ‘N Ride got us on all the main coasters with the smaller rides as we waited for our time slots.

Sunset over Thorpe Park
Sunset over Thorpe Park

As the sun began to set, the Summer Nights started and Thorpe Park #IslandBeats kicked off. Taking full advantage of the quietness of the park we skipped the support acts and had a few more rides before taking place right in front of the stage in the Lost City. Rixton took to the stage to the screams of the gathered fans. The ‘Arena’ is pretty small, which gives the gigs a nice intimate feel – the front of the stage has a VIP area, and then behind that is main audience. If you can, get yourself a VIP ticket, the acts are literally ‘right there’ – it’s as close as you’ll get (unless you storm the stage).

Up close and personal with Rixton at Thorpe Park #IslandBeats
Up close and personal with Rixton at Thorpe Park #IslandBeats

I’ll happily admit I didn’t know much of Rixton at all – I knew they are in the ‘Cornetto’ advert with ‘that song’ and that was it. In their hour or so set, I would say I became a fan, it was a fantastic gig, full of energy and lead singer Jake Roche (off of Shane Ritchie and Coleen Nolan) got the audience suitably whipped up. He’s a natural showman and full of charisma, and the band are full of talent. No patchy live vocals here, it all sounded fantastic! I must admit I was a bit gutted when they finished, although Jake unexpectedly charging into the crowd (much to the panic of the security and ‘Artist Liaison’) was a fun end to a great little show.

I’d heartily recommend going to the Thorpe Park #IslandBeats events, they are a fantastic family friendly concert which, along with the innovative ‘Reserve ‘N Ride’ system, makes for a fabulous day out!

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