2008 saw a complete overhaul of the boating lake opposite the Courtyard Tavern and the arrival of a brand new Splash Battle water ride with a pirate theme; aptly named ‘Battle Galleons’. Here TowersTimes has followed the progress of the ride throughout the closed season period until its opening in March.
Construction work commenced late in the 2007 season, with the path leading to the Haunted Hollow and Flume is closed off and the lake drained. The Splash Kart structures had already been removed in preparation for construction works to begin – note that the footers visible in the lake bed were the footers from the Swan Boat Ride, which used to occupy the lake.
The Splash Kart station had now been entirely demolished, with some of the below photos taken from where the station used to stand. The Day Designer Booth by the lake was still standing… for now. Several footers for Battle Galleons were now in place and a fair amount of concrete had been poured. One entrance to the Tavern was fenced off for Battle Galleons’ construction.
We returned a few days later where work was continuing on-site. Meanwhile, the Splash Karts sat in storage behind Duel, helpfully next to a dustbin, and the remains of the Splash Kart track resided in the car park. Some Battle Galleon footers and access vents sat alongside a pile of Splash Kart debris.
As the park opened for the Half Term Hullabaloo, it could be seen that Mutiny Bay and Battle Galleons were slowly taking shape ready for their opening a little over a month later. The top of the Towers offered a good view across the whole of Mutiny Bay – pictured is the Tea Cups being transformed into Marauder’s Mayhem, as well as the prominent dome of the now defunct 3D Cinema. Looking across the lake at ground level, the ship at the centre of the Battle Galleons was now in place, while the station building neared completion. Also pictured is the exit of Battle Galleons, looking through onto the ride platform, with what would become the on-ride photo shop alongside it. Also pictured is the ride’s water channel starting to be filled for the first time. Elsewhere, the entrance to Mutiny Bay was taking shape, with flags on top on the courtyard showing that Captain Black was moving in. From Towers Street, guests could get a good overview of the Battle Galleons, including the new island theming, currently floating metres above the water level.