Rollercoaster riders rescued after Blackpool breakdown

About 30 people including a five-year-old boy had to be rescued from a rollercoaster in Blackpool.

The wooden, twin-track Grand National ride, built in 1935, broke down at midday on Tuesday.

Staff at the Blackpool Pleasure Beach attraction had to climb up the ride, which stands 62 feet (19m) high, to escort nervous thrill-seekers back to the ground.

Ride breaks down at Blackpool Pleasure Beach
Visitors are helped down from the Grand National rollercoaster ride at Blackpool Pleasure Beach, Lancashire (Owen Humphreys/PA)

At about the same time, another rollercoaster at the same amusement park, the giant Big One, also suffered a temporary stoppage, but riders were able to remain seated and the ride continued five minutes later.

Steve Ely, from Sheffield, South Yorkshire, on the Grand National ride with his two children, tweeted a photo of the ride stuck at the top of an incline on the roller-coaster.

He also criticised the Pleasure Beach and said all customers were given in compensation was a bottle of water and tickets that could not be used.

An eyewitness waiting to get on the ride said his children were “devastated” as the ride was stopped while the problem was dealt with.

A spokesman for Blackpool Pleasure Beach said: “At 11.55 am on Tuesday June 1 a stoppage occurred on the lift hill of the Grand National.

“All riders were safely escorted down the lift hill, and the ride was checked and re-opened just before 1pm

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“Shortly afterwards there was a very brief stoppage on the Big One lift hill, at 50ft, riders remained seated and the ride continued after five minutes.”

In April riders on the Big One had to be escorted down after the amusement attraction broke down.

The ride reopened later that day.