Devon’s new immersive dinosaur experience is gearing up to open in December once the new tiered level of lockdown regulations are known.
Building work is nearing completion on Dino Land Torquay below the Queens Hotel on Victoria Parade, in the former Ibiza Bar below Salt & Pepper restaurant.
Dino Land manager Ben Thomson invited DevonLive to have a sneak preview as builders complete the interactive attraction which, coincidentally is next door to the former Dinosaur World which was closed after its disgraced owner was convicted of sex offences. There is no connection between the old and the new dinosaur attractions.
Ben said: “What we are planning is much more modern and up-to-date. It’s totally different.
“It will be educational but we will incorporate Virtual Reality and a 3D cinema. It’s more of an immersive experience because that’s the way kids learn nowadays. It’s an immersive experience which uses modern technology like the VR headsets.
“There will be the food and drink area which is great for kids parties, but also parents can sit and have a coffee or a glass of wine while the kids are watching a film or playing.”
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While work is still going on we were not able to photograph the whole Dino Land experience, but this spooky picture is a look behind the scenes.
Ben explained: “There will be six different rooms, including a dinosaur escape room, but it will all be included in the entry fee because we want to attract families and they need it to be a good value price.
“Depending on the new Covid-19 rules we are hoping to open by the end of December.”
Other attractions included sand play, where children can dig for fossils. There will be a water feature, arts and crafts area and a science lab.
Ben added: “Ever since we announced this we have had so much interest from parents – especially during the half-term.”
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The former Dinosaur World was boarded up after its owner, convicted sex offender David Hill, 54, was convicted at Exeter Crown Court of having hundreds of sadistic videos of women and images of child sex abuse and was put on the sex offenders register. Hill was a former vice-chairman of the English Riviera Attractions tourism group.
The new Dino Land Torquay owner stressed: “There is no connection between the old Dinosaur World and this. I wouldn’t have anything to do with him.”