Great Yarmouth’s famous snails enjoy a fresh lick of paint
- Credit: Michael Cole
They are one of Great Yarmouth's most well-loved attractions, and thanks to a new lick of paint they are looking spick and span ahead of the holiday season.
The snails at Joyland in the resort's Golden Mile were first unveiled in 1949 and have been popular with holidaymakers and locals alike ever since.
The larger than life, colourful creatures work hard during the summer months, taking youngsters and grown ups up and down around a short loop.
Now, the machines are being spruced up before the busy summer months when they will be ridden countless times, ready to trundle along at a snail's pace of about 4mph.
When asked why he though the snails were such an enduring and iconic attraction, Michael Cole, one of Joyland's directors, said they asked themselves the same question.
'Year after year people come back, they really capture people's imaginations. They invoke memories going back generations.
'For small children that is a nice little ride. It's not a tea cup ride but it's also not a white knuckle rollercoaster,' Mr Cole said.
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'Whenever you say you're from Great Yarmouth people mention the snails at Joyland. People just love them, we must be doing something right.'
The snails get stripped down to the bare steel before they get repainted. All the components are then tested and then they are reassembled.
'Most are completely rebuilt, they do an awful lot of work,' Mr Cole said.
'We have been doing it for a long, long time so we know what were are doing with them. The steel work on them is excellent, they are pretty well built.'
Joyland was founded by Horace Cole, Michael's great-grandfather. He said the park's enduring success was down to visitors enjoying the nostalgia of traditional rides, which were freshened up with new additions.
Although the snails were the signature ride, the Tyrolean Tubs were also unique – and a visiting group of historic funfair fans from America has pledged to help subsidise them if they ever have financial problems.
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