This Page is an Archive of all news items featured on the Joyland Books News Page between 1 July and 31 December 2010.
For the latest news, click here.

Enjoy a day trip to Battersea Funfair
29 December 2010

Our amusement park nostalgia website themagiceye is going back in time to 1972, as Associate Editor of OK! magazine, Phil Gould, writes about a childhood visit to Battersea Funfair.

The funfair at the Festival Gardens in Battersea opened in 1951 as part of the Festival of Britain. The brand new article, Day Trip to Battersea Funfair, describes the very different park that existed in its final years. This is the first in a series of Joyland Books celebrations of the 60th Anniversary of Battersea Funfair in 2011. Read article...

Photograph: National Fairground Archive

New releases in 'Building Up...' DVD series
19 December 2010

Some of the most popular DVDs at Joyland Books are the series from Dave Homer Video which show fairground rides being built up in various locations. Well, six new titles have been released just in time for Christmas. Building up the Moonrocket shows this classic ride being built up at Lincoln Steam Rally in 2008, along with footage of it operating for the first time following its restoration in 1993 at Harewood House Steam Rally and in 1994 at Hull Fair.

Other new releases in this series are Building up the Stargate, Building up the 'Move In Top' Take Off, Building up the Vertical Limit UFO, Building up the 20th Century Thriller and Building Up the KMG Move It 32. And for the full list of the 'Building Up...' click here.

Cascade Park
18 December 2010

Since its opening in 1897, Cascade Park has welcomed thousands of visitors to its rides, picnic grove, summer cottages, mineral springs, dance pavilion, swimming pool, baseball field, zoo, boat rides, outdoor theater, fireworks, and numerous other amusements. The park is an unusually beautiful natural setting with Big Run Falls, Cat Rocks, a gorge, rolling hills, shady walkways, and even a ginkgo tree or two. In the 1890s, when it was called a trolley park, crowds of visitors arrived by streetcar. Eventually automobiles took over, and the roller coaster was dismantled to make space for a parking lot. Today automobiles spill out of the parking lot once a year when more than 1,000 vintage cars travel to the Back to the 50s Weekend, now in its 25th year. The new book Cascade Park by Anita DeVivo and the Lawrence County Historical Society tells the story in fabulous photos.

Work starts at Dreamland Margate
16 December 2010

Visible work has started at the Dreamland Amusement Park, Margate, with the park's Cinema building now fenced off and scaffolding beginning to appear. Work on the repair of exterior of the cinema building and electrics should start in January, then in February/March work should start on the restoration and rebuild of the Scenic Railway roller coaster. We will keep you updated on progress and will post photographs as work gears up. For more information, visit the Dreamland Construction Photo Gallery, which has been set up to track progress with the development of the world's first amusement park of thrilling historic rides.

Delivering for Christmas!
13 December 2010

And we mean it! Unlike almost all other online booksellers we try to keep all of our books in stock at all times. So we can get them to you quicker.

The last Edwardian jester
12 December 2010

Everyone likes to be entertained - in the theatre, the cinema or your own home. The Last Edwardian Jester by Colin Dale is about a family of professional entertainers during the peak years of the British music hall and equally popular circus. The story, painstakingly researched by Colin Dale, describes the achievements of the family in the days of inconvenient transport, a political and historical setting in the hey-day of the British Empire, and during three wars and their aftermath. The strains and gains of peripatetic lives are outlined and the effect of the decline of the music hall and circus had in the 20th century. More...

And don't forget that we now have a department selling nothing but circus books where you will find one of the largest selection of circus books in the world. And for secondhand circus books, click here.

New DVD remembers Disneyland in the 1970s
3 December 2010

At last the wait is over. Following the success of the Disneyland 1955-1959 and Disneyland 1960-1969 DVDs, we are pleased to announce the next DVD in the saga: Disneyland 1970-1979.

With a look inside Disneyland California in the groovy seventies, this DVD shows the many changes that had occurred; shops were closed down, attractions were updated, omitted and added and a new land of toe tapping, hip swinging bears moved into their own land entitled, Bear County.

Now you can relive the magical changes that highlighted Walt Disney's Disneyland in the seventies. More...

Why did Loudoun Castle theme park have to close?
12 November 2010

Henk Bembom, owner of Loudoun Castle theme park, which closed last month, has revealed why the theme park has to close in an interview with Park World Magazine. In this revealing interview, Bembom explains the financial difficulties of operating a major theme park, which has received significant investment under his ownership, in Scotland. But he has high hopes for the future of the site. Click here to read in full...

Worthing amusement park closes
31 October 2010

Peter Pan's Playground, the children's amusement park on Worthing seafront, has closed for good after the Council told the operator that it is to be bulldozed to make way for the town's new swimming pool. Peter Pan's opened in the 1950s (see photograph on the right) and now features a selection of children's rides, including miniature train, mini chair-o-planes and a motorised car ride, along with bouncy castles and play equipment. The operator, Clive Haggerd, has not been offered an alternative site by the Council. The Aquarena development, which is to be built on the site, has not yet received planning permission.

Above: Peter Pan's Playground, Worthing, pictured in 1958. Photograph: Amusement Park Photographic Library

Lincolnshire amusement parks of the 1970s
25 October 2010

Amusement park nostalgia website themagiceye brings you a brand new article this month from Phil Gould. Lincolnshire Amusement Parks of the 1970s visits permanent sites at Skegness, Ingoldmells and Mablethorpe experiencing seaside holidays in what now seems like a distant world.

Click here to read this article or here to visit themagiceye homepage. View other articles on amusement park history by clicking here.

Loudoun Castle Theme Park closes for good
2 October 2010

Loudoun Castle Theme Park in East Ayrshire has announced that it has closed for good as it is no longer economically viable. The park originally opened in 1995 but was the subject of significant investment when it was subsequently acquired by Henk Bembom in 2003. The owners also blame the looming VAT increase, bad weather and the rise in publicly-funded tourist attractions.

Hands on at Hollycombe
25 September 2010

Amusement park nostalgia website themagiceye stays with the gallopers theme for another month, with a look behind the scenes at permanent vintage fairground Hollycombe.

Previously featured on the now defunct website in 2000, Hands on at Hollycombe by Dave Page is a glimpse into the world of fairground enthusiasts and their dedication to the preservation cause. Click here to read...

Fairgrounds at war 1939-1945
12 September 2010

A new release by the author of The Showman's Forgotten Scammells and Showmen's Engines at War. The new book Fairgrounds at War 1939-1945 by Kay Townsend features 272 pages of stories and many photos from survivors with archive material never seen before. This book charts what happened to fairgrounds during World War II and what they suffered.

In 1939, most fairs were cancelled until Billy Butlin was summoned to No10 to tell the showmen to open again to boost morale. This book contains details of the black-out fairs, Holiday at Home fairs. With few drivers as the men were called up, women carried on. This book will interest showmen, war enthusiasts and fairground followers. It is the first of its kind and has taken over two years to complete. More details...

Fairytale fundraiser success
28 August 2010

Joyland Books held its first fundraising car boot sale today at Southcombe Farm, and it was a big success. The event was to raise funds for the Fairytale Farm project. There will be a car boot sale at Southcombe Farm near Chipping Norton every Saturday until 16 October. More here.

Controversial amusement park chronicled in new book
22 August 2010

From 1924 to 1981, Springlake was Oklahoma City’s premier place for fun for everyone around the state. Its history is covered in a new book, Springlake Amusement Park by Douglas Loudenback.

For all its goodness, Springlake was a flawed park, remaining segregated longer than many other businesses during the tumultuous civil rights era. Forced to integrate by the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Springlake adapted poorly — instead of opening its huge pool to all swimmers and sunbathers, the pool became an aquarium. Racial tensions culminated on Easter 1971 with a small but important racially based riot from which the park never fully recovered. This book covers all aspects of the park's history with numerous evocative photographs. Click here for details.

California theme parks are focus of fantastic new book
8 August 2010

Amusement parks have been a staple of California recreation and entertainment for over a century. In the new book, California Theme Parks by Alex Miller and Bryce Walker, discover how these magical places came to be. Learn little-known secrets of 20 California parks and what makes them landmarks. For guests of all ages, California's theme parks offer an abundance of entertainment possibilities. 301 colour photos provide a unique glimpse into an industry that forever changed family entertainment. Click here for more information on this fantastic new title.

Joyland Books now accepts PayPal
7 August 2010

Joyland Books has accepted credit card payments for over 9 years without a single incident affecting any of our customers. We are proud of our security record. However, surveys have shown that some customers prefer to use the well-known PayPal service, where customers do not need to provide credit card details to the merchant. We have therefore listened to our customers and now accept payment by PayPal for all items except postcards.

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Gallopers at the amusement park
1 August 2010

Amusement park nostalgia website themagiceye has dusted down its oldest article to date. In September 2000, Gallopers at the Amusement Park was a tour of the carousels of all types that were operating in UK amusement parks at the time. It was available on Joyland Books for one month only. The Year 2000 was designated ‘The International Year of the Carousel’, and this article showed that the UK was one of the best places in the world to see these vintage rides. The article looks at gallopers at more than 40 British parks, some of which have now closed down. Click here to take the tour of Gallopers at the Amusement Park, or here for themagiceye's front page. 

Story Land book heads up new amusement park titles
31 July 2010

Story Land by Jim Miller, just out, heads up a huge selection of new amusement park titles from Arcadia Publishing. The book about this famous childhood park also has a companion title called Story Land: 15 Historic Postcards, which is a loose leaf collection of beautiful postcards. Also recently released and added to Joyland Books are books about Freedomland, Early Amusement Parks of Orange County, Rock Springs Park, Chippewa Lake Park, Six Flags Great Adventure, Myrtle Beach Pavilion, Early Los Angeles County Attractions, Lake Compounce, Santa's Village, Rocky Point Park, Lakewood Park and Knotts Berry Farm. New historic postcard collections are now available for Six Flags Great Adventure, Hersheypark and Dorney Park. All of this is in addition to our already massive range of amusement park books. All of the above titles are heavily discounted and, unlike almost all other retailers, we dispatch these titles from the UK.

Story Land by Jim Miller is a new release from Arcadia Publishing.

10.3m investment announced at Pleasure Beach
27 July 2010

Pleasure Beach Blackpool has announced the launch of Nickelodeon Land, which will open at Britain's mot visited amusement park in April 2011. Nickelodeon Land represents an investment of 10.3m.

This collaboration between Pleasure Beach Blackpool and Nickelodeon, the famous entertainment brand for kids, will see a 6 acre area of Pleasure Beach transformed into Nickelodeon Land, which will feature 14 rides. The development, which will replace the Beaver Creek area of the park, will feature nine brand new rides and five re-themed existing rides. Existing rides to be re-themed include the Zipper Dipper roller coaster, Magic Mountain and the Beaver Creek Log Flume. Nickelodeon Land will also include themed retail and catering outlets.

Nickelodeon Land at Pleasure Beach Blackpool will replace the Beaver Creek area of the park. Visit for more information.

New rides include SpongeBob's Splash Bash, which is an interactive ride where riders have the opportunity to turn the jets onto their friends and blast jellyfish with jets of water. Avatar Airbender allows riders to join Aang on an amazing adventure, spinning and soaring through the air on a giant disk. The Rugrats Lost River is a rollicking flume ride where you join the Rugrats on their quest to find the mythical Temple of Spoon.

Joyland Books to open its gates for one day only
17 July 2010

Southcombe Farm, the home of Joyland Books, is throwing open its gates on Saturday 24 July 2010 with a yard sale. The sale is open to all and will include toys, clothes, furniture, household goods, and much more, with all proceeds going towards the construction of the Fairytale Farm project. And you will be able to buy books and DVDs whilst you are there - just ask for Nick Laister. We will have a catalogue available at the yard sale which you can browse through and we can retrieve any books or DVDs you would like to buy (or to browse through) from our store room.

The entrance to Southcombe Farm, on the A44 near Chipping Norton.

The sale is open from 10am to 3pm and everybody is welcome. We are on the A44, next to the Southcombe traffic lights just outside Chipping Norton - details of how to find us here. Teas and coffees will be served and everything will be undercover if wet.

Discounts at Joyland
4 July 2010

We always try and discount our books at Joyland to ensure that they are cheaper than our competitors. Today we have reduced the price of Circus Press Agent by Gene Plowden from 12.50 to 7.79, a saving of 4.71! And Circus by Rodney Manser has been reduced from 12.00 to 9.90.

We have also added a new book called Amusement Parks in England, which is priced at 19.50 instead of its recommended retail price of 19.99.

And go to our front page and you will see that all our new releases are priced at substantially discounted prices.

Pier railways and cliff lifts on DVD!
1 July 2010

Joyland Books features two new DVDs about a couple of fascinating aspects of the UK's seaside heritage: pier railways and cliff lifts.

The Seaside Pier is a well loved feature of many resorts. Some of them had a railway line running to the end initially to move luggage from steamers. The DVD Piers & Pier Railways takes a look at piers around the country and features film of these still operating and those that have passed into history. Rare film also shows piers suffering from fires and drifting ships. More...

The DVD Cliff Lifts of Great Britain features the ups and downs of Britain's cliff lifts. Nearly all of them are seen and archive footage is used to show older cars in service. More...

Worlds apart in Wales: Barry Island Pleasure Park
1 July 2010

Barry Island Pleasure Park closed as a permanent amusement park at the end of the 2009 season, but temporary travelling rides still operate on the site in 2010 whilst its long-term future is decided. This article by Dave Page from 2001 was previously featured on fairground website and paints a bleak picture of a park in decline. Amusement park nostalgia website themagiceye has relaucnhed the article, with new photographs. Read on...

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