London's Calling, Meet Alexandra Palace (Ally Pally)
Go Ape has landed at Alexandra Palace.
This latest addition is our 31st UK site, and we think it's going to be a corker (they do say your thirties are even happier than your twenties).
Our Tree Top Junior course is prepped and ready to go for the big launch on Saturday 18 March; the park's centuries-old oaks will soon be ringing with the sound of chattering monkeys.
Ally Pally's Tree Top Junior course brings that up to 19 across the UK - find out about the others here.
Ally Pally will also be the first site to feature our QuickJump Freefall activity, opening as part of our Tree Top Adventure course this summer.
And although we obviously consider ourselves Ally Pally's star attraction, we're really just the gem in an already impressively blinged-up crown.
Once you've finished swinging through the trees, you can while away the day in the onsite skate park, pitch and putt, Segway rally or year-round ice-rink. There's also a boating lake and Farmers Market. And once you're pooped out, you can stuff yourself silly in one of the cafes or grab a drink at the bar.
I know we didn't realise Ally Pally was such a hive of activity, either.
Here are 4 other things you might not know about the iconic site:
- The Palace was opened in 1873 to celebrate Queen Victoria's birthday. However, it was destroyed by fire just 16 days later. Let's hope our shiny new course has better luck!
- It played a pretty important role in both World Wars. In WW1 the Bijou Theatre was used as a hospital for Belgian refugees, and the grounds as an internment camp for captured enemy soldiers. In WW2, although television broadcasts had been suspended, the BBC transmitters at Alexandra Palace were used in secret to jam the radio signals of German pilots.
- Outside of the war years, the Palace and its grounds have had lots of other surprising functions, including as a venue for the 1908 London Olympics, in which the Alexandra Palace Rifle Society went on to win gold, silver and bronze medals for the UK. The grounds also used to feature a popular horse racecourse, colloquially known as the 'Frying Pan'.
- The Park has a whopping 196 acres to explore. We'll pack our sensible shoes.
- Nowadays they host events to suit all personalities and penchants. Upcoming gigs include a festival of railway modelling, tattoo show, and the Maccabees farewell concert. Imagine what that would look like combined?
Amazing. See you there?
The park is within a 40-minute walk of 7 tube and railway stations, or if you're saving all your energy for the course, the W3 bus drops you off at the Palm Court entrance and the 184 stops at Alexandra Palace Station. Easy peasy.
So, here's to our new friend Ally Pally we're a match made in heaven.