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NEWS
Universal Studios eyes the UK for first European resort
POSTED 29 Dec 2023 . BY Kath Hudson
The most recent attraction – Universal Studios Beijing – opened in September 2021 Credit: Universal Studios
Universal Destinations and Experiences is assessing a site in Bedford, UK for a resort
This would be the company’s sixth attraction and the first in Europe
A 480-acre former industrial site has been purchased
Talks are already underway with local and national stakeholders
Universal Studios is assessing the feasibility of opening its first European resort in the UK, following the purchase of a former brickworks in Bedfordshire.

The theme park operator has confirmed it’s in the “very early stages of exploring the possibility of a potential park and resort experience in Bedford.”

Parent company, Comcast Corporation has purchased the 480-acre site, which previously had planning permission for 1,000 homes. Universal Destinations and Experiences has also had positive conversations with various local and national stakeholders, including Bedford Borough Council and the Mayor of Bedford Borough. However, the company has stressed plans are still in the early stages and it is likely to be many months before a decision is made.

Universal Destinations and Experiences has cited the UK’s large population, creative industries, strong tourism industry, transportation infrastructure and close proximity to Europe as making it an attractive proposition for a resort.

The Bedfordshire site is just 45 minutes from London, within easy reach of tourism magnets Oxford and Cambridge and has half of the UK’s population – including the Leisure Media/Attractions Management HQ – within two hours. As well as being close to the A1 and M1, Luton Airport is nearby.

With the Harry Potter Studios located just 40 minutes away in Watford, Bedford is an ideal destination for touring theme park enthusiasts.

Universal has five entertainment and resort complexes around the world - Universal Orlando Resort, Universal Studios Hollywood, Universal Studios Japan, Universal Beijing Resort and Universal Studios Singapore. The resorts offer technologically advanced film and television-based attractions; hotels, food and beverage and live entertainment.

Universal has been responsible for some of the world’s most famous films including Jurassic Park, E.T., Back To The Future and Despicable Me. Its parks also feature franchises produced by other studios, including Harry Potter and The Simpsons.

If this project goes ahead it will be a massive win for Bedford: Bedford Borough Council currently flags up The River Great Ouse as one of its most attractive features. It's a growing town, with around 27,000 new homes planned by 2040 and expectations that the population – currently at 185,000 - will keep growing. Major companies, including Amazon and Fuji Film, have already chosen the town as their operational base.

Universal theme parks create thousands of jobs, generate significant positive economic impact, both locally and further afield. The company is also committed to protecting the ecology of the areas where they operate and has a strong track record of working with local communities.

A website has been launched https://universalukproject.co.uk to update locals and allow them to give feedback.

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Plans have been tabled for a US$2bn theme park and entertainment destination development in north-east Oklahoma, US.
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The planned Universal Studios theme park in Frisco, Texas, could open as early as 2026.
  Universal Parks & Resorts rebrands as Universal Destinations & Experiences


Universal Parks & Resorts has undergone a rebrand to "better reflect" the changing nature of its offerings.
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NEWS
Universal Studios eyes the UK for first European resort
POSTED 29 Dec 2023 . BY Kath Hudson
The most recent attraction – Universal Studios Beijing – opened in September 2021 Credit: Universal Studios
Universal Destinations and Experiences is assessing a site in Bedford, UK for a resort
This would be the company’s sixth attraction and the first in Europe
A 480-acre former industrial site has been purchased
Talks are already underway with local and national stakeholders
Universal Studios is assessing the feasibility of opening its first European resort in the UK, following the purchase of a former brickworks in Bedfordshire.

The theme park operator has confirmed it’s in the “very early stages of exploring the possibility of a potential park and resort experience in Bedford.”

Parent company, Comcast Corporation has purchased the 480-acre site, which previously had planning permission for 1,000 homes. Universal Destinations and Experiences has also had positive conversations with various local and national stakeholders, including Bedford Borough Council and the Mayor of Bedford Borough. However, the company has stressed plans are still in the early stages and it is likely to be many months before a decision is made.

Universal Destinations and Experiences has cited the UK’s large population, creative industries, strong tourism industry, transportation infrastructure and close proximity to Europe as making it an attractive proposition for a resort.

The Bedfordshire site is just 45 minutes from London, within easy reach of tourism magnets Oxford and Cambridge and has half of the UK’s population – including the Leisure Media/Attractions Management HQ – within two hours. As well as being close to the A1 and M1, Luton Airport is nearby.

With the Harry Potter Studios located just 40 minutes away in Watford, Bedford is an ideal destination for touring theme park enthusiasts.

Universal has five entertainment and resort complexes around the world - Universal Orlando Resort, Universal Studios Hollywood, Universal Studios Japan, Universal Beijing Resort and Universal Studios Singapore. The resorts offer technologically advanced film and television-based attractions; hotels, food and beverage and live entertainment.

Universal has been responsible for some of the world’s most famous films including Jurassic Park, E.T., Back To The Future and Despicable Me. Its parks also feature franchises produced by other studios, including Harry Potter and The Simpsons.

If this project goes ahead it will be a massive win for Bedford: Bedford Borough Council currently flags up The River Great Ouse as one of its most attractive features. It's a growing town, with around 27,000 new homes planned by 2040 and expectations that the population – currently at 185,000 - will keep growing. Major companies, including Amazon and Fuji Film, have already chosen the town as their operational base.

Universal theme parks create thousands of jobs, generate significant positive economic impact, both locally and further afield. The company is also committed to protecting the ecology of the areas where they operate and has a strong track record of working with local communities.

A website has been launched https://universalukproject.co.uk to update locals and allow them to give feedback.

RELATED STORIES
Plans revealed for US$2bn Oklahoma theme park


Plans have been tabled for a US$2bn theme park and entertainment destination development in north-east Oklahoma, US.
Universal Studios develops new kids’ business model for Frisco park.


The planned Universal Studios theme park in Frisco, Texas, could open as early as 2026.
Universal Parks & Resorts rebrands as Universal Destinations & Experiences


Universal Parks & Resorts has undergone a rebrand to "better reflect" the changing nature of its offerings.
MORE NEWS
Heartbreak for Swedish theme park, Liseberg, as fire breaks out
A fire has destroyed part of the new water world, Oceana, at Liseberg in Sweden, and a construction worker has been reported missing.
Museum director apologises after comparing the city of Florence to a sex worker
Museum director Cecilie Hollberg has come under fire for comparing the city to a sex worker due to uncontrolled mass tourism.
Populous reveals plans for major e-sports arena in Saudi Arabia
Populous have unveiled their plans for a state-of-the-art e-sports arena, designed to stand as a central landmark in Qiddaya City’s gaming and e-sports district, Saudi Arabia.
Raby Castle reveals ambitious plans to become a major visitor destination
Raby Castle, known as one of the finest medieval fortifications in England, is nearing the end of an ambitious two-year renovation project.
Wake The Tiger launches new 1,000sq m expansion
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COMPANY PROFILES
ProSlide Technology, Inc.

A former national ski team racer, ProSlide® CEO Rick Hunter’s goal has been to integrate the smoot [more...]
Clip 'n Climb

Clip ‘n Climb currently offers facility owners and investors more than 40 colourful and unique Cha [more...]
Red Raion

Founded in 2014, Red Raion is the CGI studio for media-based attractions. [more...]
instantprint

We’re a Yorkshire-based online printer, founded in 2009 by Adam Carnell and James Kinsella. [more...]
+ More profiles  
CATALOGUE GALLERY
+ More catalogues  
DIRECTORY
+ More directory  
DIARY

 

08-08 May 2024

Hospitality Design Conference

Hotel Melià , Milano , Italy
04-07 Nov 2024

Global Wellness Summit (GWS)

In person, St Andrews, United Kingdom
+ More diary  
 


ADVERTISE . CONTACT US

Leisure Media
Tel: +44 (0)1462 431385

©Cybertrek 2024

ABOUT LEISURE MEDIA
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