Sunday, April 13, 2014

Abandoned Places: Loudoun Castle Theme Park

Once billed as "Scotland's Best Family Theme Park," Loudoun Theme Park has been silent for nearly half a decade, many of its attractions sold or removed. The theme park was built behind Loudoun Castle, the interior of which was destroyed by fire in 1941. The chair-o-plane ride, The Plough,

was one of the largest in the world. In 2007, one of the ride operators of The Rat, a roller coaster, went onto the tracks to give the cars a boost. When it started going, rather than let go, he held onto the rear car all the way up to the top of the hill where he finally let go, plunging 80 feet to his death. The park itself became a casualty of the economy in 2010.
All images used Creative Commons License Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 2.0 Generic. All images by Charles Graham [Clyde_REV / Flickr].

As an added bonus, here are some pictures of another jail: Lorton Reformatory.
Located in Lorton, VA, the prison was built due to an investigation into the horrible conditions of prisons in Washington D.C. It closed in 2001 and is now part of the D.C. Workhouse and Reformatory Historic District. [All photos used by permission from Opacity.


  1. Theme parks are so sad when they're empty. :-(

  2. It sure doesn't take long for a place to go downhill when people aren't in it. It's like people are the heart of a building, and when they no longer are there, the building dies.
    You'd think in that prison, they would have sold some of the things off - like the bed frames and the toilets. A few dollars back in the coffers would be nice.

  3. Sure, those jail conditions are SO much better!
    That theme park fell apart rather fast. It could still be salvaged.

  4. For some reason, this post reminded me of a time in my not so distant past when a friend told me she was going to buy an American castle in one of the eastern states. At the time, I laughed, but she said that they were actually cheaper than real houses, because the ones she was looking at had no electricity or modern plumbing installed, haha. Now I wish I could remember her full name, so I could find out if she ever went through with it. Oh well....

    Alex Hurst, fantasy author in Japan, participating in Blogging A-Z April Challenge.

  5. So enjoying seeing all your post of abandoned places!

  6. Amusement parks make some of the creepiest abandoned places. All that "fun stuff" just sitting there rusting away. And what a hell of a way to commit suicide: by roller coaster. Wow.

  7. Abandoned amusement parks make me think of all those Scooby-Doo episodes involving a "haunted" amusement park.

  8. Interesting concept for a theme park, but seems like some sort of historical attraction would have made more sense. Then again maybe they have so many old castles in the UK that they've become passe.

    The prison doesn't look much worse that some that I've seen in other pictures or TV, but I guess we don't see everything in the pictures.

    Wrote By Rote
    An A to Z Co-host blog

  9. We have an L-named amusement park here that looks like it SHOULD be abandoned. Lakeside. Even the website looks like it was built in 1995. Amazing that the Loudoun looks better than ours does, for having been abandoned a few years...

  10. So many abandoned amusement parks. I have this view that there aren't that many of them around, in the first place, but apparently they grow like weeds. And then die like plants in my yard.

    You could probably do a whole series on abandoned prisons and mental hospitals, but those pictures are always cool.

  11. Jails are creepy, but I LOVE the pictures.

    Failed theme parks just make me sad.

    True Heroes from A to Z

  12. Why didn't that man let go??? What the heck was he thinking???

    That picture with the cloud of The Rat looks so ominous and creepy. I love it.

  13. Loudoun Park looks like something straight out of a Scooby Doo cartoon....and so does that prison.

  14. There's nothing sadder than an abandoned amusement park - something that's supposed to be filled with laughter, smiling faces, and delighted shrieks -- but has nothing...

  15. Misha: There is definitely a greater sense of something missing.

    Donna: Nature does come back in more quickly than we expect it to.

    Alex C: I bet they are, though, which is frightening.

    Alex H: An American castle? I don't think those are really a thing. I mean, not really a thing. Darn! Now I have to go look that up.

    Chaos: I'm glad!

    L.G.: Well, I don't think he meant to. Or maybe he did? Because why do you keep holding on until you're too high to survive?

    Pat: Yeah. It's pretty cool.

    Lee: When you're dealing with a castle that no one can go inside of, maybe this is the way to do it?

    ABftS: We had one of those where I grew up. I'm pretty sure it did eventually get abandoned. But I think they also tore it down.

    Briane: I think amusement parks are some of the hardest hit places during bad economies.

    You should see my list of places that I haven't used!

    Crystal: Some of the jails are very creepy.

    Elsie: I think he was scared to let go and then couldn't hold on.

    Mark: If they'd been thinking ahead, they would have made the castle itself part of the park with rides inside and everything. Now, that would be something!

    Lexa: Yeah, those and playgrounds.

  16. All these abandoned places, especially theme parks, are so sad.

    I'm afraid, from Matt's experiences, prisoners don't appreciate better conditions, they will still wreck things if they feel inclined, no matter what.

  17. The inside may have been destroyed, but the outside of the castle looks beautiful.

    And another abandoned prison. What a cheery looking place.

  18. I guess abandoned theme parks could almost be an A-Z on their own... probably not, but I seem to recall seeing lots of them photographed and placed over the internet.

    Although, now that I think of it, it could be the same one, just pictured from different angles!

  19. That's a Scooby Doo episode just waiting to happen!

  20. Jo: Well, it doesn't matter the conditions, they're still prisoners.

    Jeanne: It is great from the outside.

    Rusty: heh That's actually a funny thought.

    TAS: That would be a great one!

  21. We used to say, if you can't do the time, don't do the crime.

  22. Jo: That may still be something that's said.

  23. I am glad someone put my photos to good use! find me on facebook

    Thanks Charles aka Clyde_REV

  24. Charles: Thank you for taking them! I have envy that I couldn't go there myself.