Inside The Spooky Abandoned Mr Blobby Theme Park
If you’re anything like us, then you will have loved taking an exciting trip to a theme park when you were growing up. And whilst the thrills of being spun and thrown around may have soured somewhat as an exuberance-filled youth transitioned into a sickbag-filled adulthood, we still have incredibly fond memories of spending time at some of the nation’s most popular attractions.
We suspect that many of you paid a visit to the likes of Thorpe Park, Alton Towers and Chessington World of Adventures, but how many of you were lucky enough to set foot in a theme park that was based on (according to one poll) “the best Saturday night TV show of all time?”
Filling the BBC’s prime time early Saturday evening slot for almost the entirety of the 1990s, Noel’s House Party was hosted by Noel Edmonds, a well known Radio DJ and TV presenter whose previous TV show – The Noel Edmonds Saturday Roadshow – inspired a number of Noel’s House Party’s most popular segments.
It’s fair to say that Edmonds and his impressive head of hair were overshadowed somewhat at the start of the show’s second series in 1992, when a notoriously divisive pink and yellow blob took centre stage.
Mr Blobby’s often hilarious pranks on unsuspecting celebrities helped send the popularity of Noel’s House Party through the stratosphere, with the bowtie-wearing monstrosity even recording a song that became the UK’s Christmas number one single in 1993.
The public antics of the world’s most annoying blob, who was the brainchild of British comedy writer Charlie Adams, led to a raft of predictable associated toys and merchandise, but it’s another money-making blobby-based venture that we’re focusing our attention on today.
To capitalise on the success of their new Saturday evening superstar, three theme parks operating under the name ‘Crinkley Bottom’ – Noel’s House Party’s fictional village setting – opened in Cricket St Thomas in Somerset, Morecambe in Lancashire and Lowestoft in Suffolk.
The theme parks, which eventually became known as ‘Blobbyland’ as the success of Noel Edmonds’ annoying sidekick grew and grew, opened between 1994 and 1996, but none lasted more than two years before being closed down and eventually abandoned.
As the hopefulness of the 1990s transitioned into a fearful and concerning new century, the memory of these wonderful parks faded into the ether. That is until a group of so-called ‘urban explorers’ stumbled across the spooky, ruined remains of one of the 1990s most widely forgotten business ventures.
The photographs the explorers took of the abandoned park in Somerset, taken in 2009, show that what was once a pink and yellow paradise now looked more akin to something out of a terrifying Hollywood horror film.
The park once offered lavish accommodation in what it called ‘Dunblobbin’, a pink-and-yellow-spotted building which featured a memorably impressive front door, in addition to a working doorbell that when pressed gave a familiar “blobby blobby blobby” cry which used to thoroughly annoyed local residents.
The photos reveal that what once would have been a dreamlike Mr Blobby-themed bedroom was now covered in mould and rubbish, whilst the adjacent ‘Blobby Shop’ looked more likely to contain ghouls and ghosts than Blobby-themed gifts and confectionery.
Faded maps of the park reveal that it once contained delights such as a sea lion show, a train ride, an Animals of Farthing Wood attraction and even a safari tour that promised real life deers and leopards.
Unfortunately, by the time this discovery had been made, the only animals left in this slice of 1990s history were the wild, woodland ones that had long since made their home in the park’s abandoned shelters and crevices.
The urban explorers were enamored with their find, so decided to leave their mark by graffitiing a message onto one of the decaying walls which, referring to another popular Noel Edmonds fronted TV show, read ‘Noel Edmonds, stop pretending Deal or no Deal is more than it is.’
The park was eventually demolished in 2014, but not before the photos encouraged a number of nostalgic thrill-seekers to make their own way to the deserted remnants of one of our childhood’s most treasured pink and yellow memories. Farewell Mr Blobby, may you rest in blobby peace.