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Devonshire February March 17

Devon's Countryside, Wildlife, History and Events

Dingles Fairground

Dingles Fairground Heritage Centre presents... NEW RIDE MOONROCKET 10AM-5PM DAILY Come and ride our NEW Moonrocket Ride THE SPACE MAN JUGGLER SPACE Walking astronaughts ROAMING ALIENS spin your own supernova CREATE SLIME IN THE SPACE LAB! galaxy arts • face painting SATURDAY IITH - SUNDAY 19TH FEBRUARY HALF TERM NR LIFTON, PL16 OAT • ONE MILE FROM A30 • FREE PARKING FAIRGROUND-HERITAGE.ORG.UK /DinglesFHC @DinglesFHC @DinglesFHC 20 Countryside, History, Walks, the Arts, Events & all things Devon at: DEVONSHIRE magazine.co.uk

The Moonrocket has landed at Dingles, a great place to take the kids and also to enjoy the nostalgia of these historic fairground rides. See DINGLES advertisement opposite page. Moonrocket lands at Dingles! February half term, 11-19, sees the introduction of the latest vintage ride at Dingles Fairground Heritage Centre, Lifton, West Devon, operated by the Fairground Heritage Trust ( Est 1986). t Shaw’s Moon Rocket has been acquired from the Maden family with the help of a 90k grant from the Heritage Memorial Fund. The ride will open to the public on Saturday February 11th until Sunday February 19th, the full season commences Friday March 17th till the end of October. The Moonrocket was the ultimate thrill ride of the 1930s and an unknown number were built by Robert Lakin and Co. of Streatham. These were delivered new to Showmen buyers between 1937 and 1939. The Moonrocket represents an era on the fairgrounds when speed, thrills and excitement was in vogue. It is one the original white knuckle rides. Shaw’s Moonrocket is the only complete example on a Lakin Moonrocket ride left in existence. Riders sit in rocket shaped cars that are mounted on an inclined circular platform that rotates at 12rpm whilst the centre of the ride rotates the opposite way at 6rpm, creating an illusionary speed of 18rpm. Shaw’s ride was later modified with swinging cars that had been developed and patented by another Showman. Although impressive and popular the Moonrocket as a ride type became uneconomical by the 1960s and all examples with the exception of Shaw’s were stored, sold to amusement parks (and subsequently scrapped) or scrapped by the 1970s. The ride now at Dingles was made in 1938 to the order of Yorkshire showman John Shaw, remarkably it was travelled until 1984. It was later purchased by the late Howard Maden and what followed was one of the most comprehensive restoration jobs of a fairground ride ever undertaken, including the retention of the original 1960s decoration. It stands as a lasting tribute to Howard who passed away in 2012. This important development demonstrates that the aim of the Fairground Heritage Trust that operates Dingles, to preserve and present the nation’s fairground heritage is being fully achieved. Since opening The Fairground Heritage Centre, it has gone from strength to strength and seen a very impressive increase in visitor numbers in the past two years. Golden Gallopers, 1930s Ghost Train, the largest Dodgem track ever to travel along with the 1950s Motor Cycle Speedway and host of vintage children’s ride are all wonderfully preserved under cover. The unique colourful backdrop has proved irresistible to the fashion and music industry and used extensively for shoots and films. The FHT is delighted to have completed the acquisition of this iconic and unique thrill ride and preserve it for the enjoyment of visitors today and future generations. The fairground Heritage Centre is just a mile off the A30 with free parking and the Carousel Café on site. Noah's Ark ride made in Burton upon Trent by Orton & Spooner in 1934. After the war, the ride was rebuilt and this Chariot Racer scene painted, which was inspired by the film Ben-Hur. The largest Dodgem track ever to travel, made by Orton Sons & Spooner of Burton on Trent in the 1930s. The artwork dates from 1953/4. The Dodgems remains the favourite ride of all time, suitable for all ages. The Golden Gallopers, are still galloping, over ninety five years after being built in 1920. For ten decades the original fairground horses, carved from wood, have carried excited passengers on their circular journey to the merry sound the jangling organ in the centre of the huge roundabout. hubcast .co.u k 21

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