Carousel Funfairs (Gary Gore and Andrew Daley Harniess) were back in Manchester’s Heaton Park after a year’s absence with a bigger Come To The Beach for 2021.
With Greater Manchester under various forms of local lockdown August and September last year, the summer fair at the popular North Manchester destination was a no-go. The same was true with the firm’s Valentines fair in February.
Not that it was all plain sailing at this year’s Come to the Beach, which ran from July 10 to August 22. The showmen had to vacate the park two weeks earlier than usual to make way for the rescheduled Parklife music festival, which normally takes place in June.
This meant they lost the August bank holiday and couldn’t realise the artificial beach to its full potential. There was also a lot of wet weather during the fair’s run. But when it came to the rides and attractions on offer, the choice was better than ever.
“After a year off, we were just happy to be back doing what we do,” Carousel Funfairs’ Chantelle Harniess told World’s Fair after the event. “When the weather was nice, we were well supported by the public. It felt as though many families wanted to get out. We had more people come for the wristband offers.”
A really big addition to the line-up was Emerson Edwards’ spinning coaster, the Magic Mouse. Whilst there have been several family coasters here in the past, this was the first time a full size roller coaster had appeared at Come to the Beach. Another attraction highlight was Andrew Harniess’ Sea Storm, a real family favourite that fitted in nicely with the event’s theme.
As well as the wristband days each Tuesday and Wednesday, when unlimited rides could be enjoyed for £9.99, a super saver deal of 25 tokens for £25 was available. Those that grabbed the vouchers in local shops could also take advantage of a two-for-one offer on wristbands. Entry was free at all times.
A separate kids zone near the park’s animal centre was overseen by Garry Michael Leach on behalf of Carousel Fun Fairs, and carried on trading even on some days the main ground closed due to the weather.
In addition to posters in shops, the event was promoted on the website Manchester’s Finest and Carousel Funfairs’ own social media channels.
“This season has been very successful and given us the boost we needed after a dreadful time in 2020,” concluded Chantelle Harniess. “We had a lot of carnivals cancelled through Covid and Manchester City Council didn’t do any bonfires this year, which was another big blow.
“However, we were able to extend our places rather than move and find new places, which made things a lot easier for us. We are looking forward to a more positive 2022.”
Main rides and attractions
Emerson Edwards’ Magic Mouse
Carousel Funfairs’ Sky Flyer (Star Flyer)
Gary Gore’s Cliffhanger Miami
Andrew Daley Harniess’ Waltzer
Tamara De-Koning’s Dodgems
William Bradley’s Blizzard Super Bob
Walter Chadwick’s Sizzler Twist
Andrew Harniess’ Sea Storm
Nathan Hart’s Jungle Fun House
Max Cubbins’ Terror Towers Ghost Train
Scott Craddock’s Mystery Mansion Haunted House
Aaron Hollland’s Snow Slide
Garry Michael Leach’s Mini Miami, toy set, mini jets, bungee trampolines and inflatables
William Cubbins’ square slip
Ross Craddock’s inflatable bumper cars
Andrew Daley Harniess’ slush stall
Main photo: Sheldon Hart’s cups and Nathan Hart’s Jungle Fun House.
From January 2022 the World’s Fair is back as a monthly print and digital publication, available by subscription only.
Photos: Lynne Whatmore