With the loss of a number of good
roller coasters from Southport it would be easy to forget about the
various dark rides. That would be a shame as there were a number of
notable rides like the Ghost Train, Crooked House, River Caves and
lastly the Fun House that dated back to 1955.
This one was a bit different from most other fun houses I've done.
Rather than follow a set route around it was set in a large hall,
that had a number of features found around it. Fans of the
traditional trick floors and stairs could find a range on one side
of the hall, which led to a number of slides to try.
In the main central area were a number of features. There were
more modern additions like a bouncy castle (that still had the logo
from it's old home of Frontier Land on it) a ball pool and a number
or arcade machines. There was also more traditional fare like the
jolly tubes, a large circular tunnel that spun as you walked through
it, and a cake walk, a large platform that raised up and down as you
walked over it.
Perhaps the most memorable though were two features that could
almost be rides in their own right. One was the social mixer, a
large flat round flat bottomed tub where people could sit around the
edge, and the tub would then spin around. The other was a joy wheel,
a large polished floor, with a large flat disc in the centre. Groups
of people would sit on the disc which would then spin at speed.
People would try to hold on for as long as possible before being
spun off, and sliding along the floor.
The Fun House lasted slightly longer than a lot of other former
rides, lasting until the 2007 season instead of 2006. The old
building has now been redeveloped in to a ghost train by the New
Pleasure Land owners. Luckily a lot of the old equipment was
salvaged by the
Save Dreamland project, so hopefully
it will find a use again.