In an announcement made via their social media channels, and in signage put up by the ride, the Resort confirmed the popular ride’s closure in preparation for something new opening in March 2017. With a closing date set for 6th September guests now have just over 6 weeks left to enjoy the attraction for one final time. As part of its farewell to the ride, the Resort are offering a selection of unique opportunities including offering a Bubbleworks Behind the Scenes Tour from 14th August – 4th September, and, once the ride has closed, guests will be able to take home memorabilia from the ride as the Resort will be selling a selection of props and elements of the ride in a silent auction with all proceeds going to charity. Chessington have also created a mosaic of Bubbleworks memories comprising of photos submitted by families who have experienced the ride over the years and are now calling on fans and guests of the ride to share more of their favourite moments from the attraction using #ByeByeBubbleworks.
First opening in 1990 as Professor Burp’s Bubbleworks as part of the new Transylvania area of the park, which also included Vampire, the ride took guests on a journey through a magical fizzy pop factory with riders being transported on themed rafts along a water channel transit system culminating in a water fountain finale. The attraction formed part of the second phase of the regeneration of Chessington Zoo, a project which was masterminded by renowned ride designer John Wardley and, although initially overshadowed by Vampire, would see Professor Burp’s Bubbleworks become one of the theme park’s most successful rides, and a highly regarded dark ride. The fizzy pop factory theme would remain for 15 years before the ride received a re-theme for the 2006 season with Imperial Leather sponsoring the ride. During the re-theme many of the original effects were sadly removed or made static, something which many thought took away from the charm of the experience. In more recent seasons, despite the Imperial Leather branding being removed, the attraction has been looking tired, with many speculating that the ride was nearing the end of its time at the Resort.