Great Yarmouth bowling alley’s £100,000 improvement effort

Marina Pearce of Regent Bowl.Brand new soft play centre being built where the old glow in the dark b

Marina Pearce of Regent Bowl.Brand new soft play centre being built where the old glow in the dark bowling lanes were.Picture: James Bass - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2013

A Great Yarmouth ten-pin alley is investing £100,000 in a move bosses hope will bowl children over.

Regent Bowl, in Regent Road, will install a giant soft play centre complete with two slides – one spiral and one wavy – and netting and platforms to climb on.

A new bar is being fitted, along with a diner, arcade machines area and party room.

And bosses said they will be employing 10 more staff – a mixture of full-time, evening and children's party leaders.

It comes after new management took over in September, with the aim to make the venue more family friendly.

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Marina Pearce, regional manager, said: 'When we decided to take over this site we looked at it and thought what we could do.

'We want family entertainment for everyone from babies upwards, and this is just fun for all the family.

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'It's putting everything back into families rather than saying you can't bring young children.'

Two lanes will be removed at the bar end, and the four glow-in-the-dark birthday party lanes will go to make way for the improvements.

It will reduce the total number of lanes from 22 to 16, but bosses said this should not cause a problem with queues.

The aim is to complete the work by November 30.

'There's a lot of buzz and people are excited that something new is coming,' added Ms Pearce. 'People have been taking leaflets for birthday parties.'

Regent Bowl, which opened 50 years ago, is the oldest bowling alley in the country that is still in use.

'We want to keep the character of the place but bring it into the 21st century,' said Ms Pearce.

She hopes the new play area will open from 9am to 7pm daily.

Special offers are also being considered – including £1 entry to the soft play area before 10am at weekends.

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