Waterpark Wet 'n' Wild is sold to North East developer, owners reveal

Wet 'n' Wild in North Shields
-Credit: (Image: Newcastle Chronicle)

Tyneside water attraction Wet ‘n’ Wild has been sold to a North East developer, it has emerged.

It emerged earlier this week that owners Serco had placed the popular indoor waterpark in North Shields on the market, some four years after buying the prime attraction. The group’s subsidiary Serco Leisure – had been tenants for six years before snapping it up in a £3.2m in 2020, but the family favourite has been closed to swimmers for the last five years.

After buying the site, Serco said its future remained “under review”, citing how it had incurred substantial financial losses in each year of operation. The company’s statement that it was looking for a buyer raised hopes that the facility could re-open.

Now an update from the business has revealed that Wet ‘n’ Wild has been sold to a developer, though the identity of the new owner and its plans for the site has yet to be revealed.

In a statement, Serco said: “‘We’ve agreed to sell the site and have exchanged contracts with a local developer with a view to completing the transaction over the summer months.”

Wet ‘n’ Wild was once Britain’s largest waterpark, home to attractions including the Black Hole, Kamikaze, Abyss and the Lazy River. It was opened in 1993 at Royal Quays by Jet, one of the original Gladiators from the ITV game show.

Serco became tenants 10 years ago and invested in the venue to try to install new features, re-opening it to the public in July 2014 after it was closed for a number of months. The attraction struggled on for a number of years, but was then acquired by London based investment vehicle Alternative Income REIT PLC, who then sold it Serco in 2020 for £3.2m.

It closed five years ago, with hopes that maintenance work would be carried out. However, the pandemic arrived and it has never reopened.