At the heart of Forbidden Valley, amidst the devastation, is a rusted swinging blade – another piece of shrapnel extracted from the pit during the Nemesis excavation. Take your seat on board and be tossed forwards and backwards as you cut your way through the Valley.

Need2Know

Min. Rider Height: 1.0m

Unaccompanied Height: 1.3m

Max. Rider Height: None

Ride Photography: No

Fastrack: Yes

Tech Specs

Manufacturer: HUSS Rides

Ride Type: Swinging Boat

Opened: 1980

Rethemed: 15th March 1997

Length of Boat: 13m

Length of Arms: 10m

Ride Height: 20m

Max. Speed: Approx 18.7km/h

Restraint: Hydraulic Lap Bars

Weight: 28 tonnes

Passengers per Boat: 45

Capacity: 1800 riders per hour

Duration: 1 min 30 secs

Riders queue around the imposing four-legged tubular steel rig, before taking their seats on The Blade. Once aboard, and the lap bar restraints have come down, The Blade will begin to swing. With each swing riders will be taken higher and higher into the air, until reaching a near-vertical position. The ride actually offers a surprising amount of ‘airtime’ (the feeling of weightlessness) at the top of its swings, with those who sit on the back rows experiencing a more thrilling ride in this respect.

Eventually the swings will decrease in height, before The Blade settles back to its starting position, allowing riders to disembark.

The Blade is the oldest attraction at Alton Towers, after initially opening as Pirate Ship in Fantasy World (now X-Sector) in 1980, the ride stood on the former site of Submission.

The arrival of Oblivion led to it being reborn as The Blade in 1997 as it was moved to Forbidden Valley as a replacement for Thunder Looper.

During the 2018/19 closed season, The Blade was subject to a relatively extensive overhaul, with local company Dusslast BOT stripping the boat itself back to its metal components, which were subsequently shot-blasted, treated and painted. This gave the attraction a very fresh look come the start of the 2019 season!

blade

Concepts

The park’s designers provided a preview of The Pirate Ship’s re-theme into The Blade, using a publicity shot of the Pirate Ship then in Fantasy World.