Screams from new Tayto Park rollercoaster ‘won’t impact local residents’

Owner Ray Coyle has lodged plans for a new €15.5m rollercoaster for the centre

The screams by riders on Tayto Park’s planned new €15.5 million rollercoaster won’t impact on nearby residents, according to the owner of Tayto Park.

Raymond Coyle said the new rollercoaster comes with a series of specific measures aimed at eliminating any noise impacts for nearby residents. He has lodged plans for the new rollercoaster project with Meath County Council.

Last July, An Bord Pleanála turned down planning permission for Mr Coyle's previous rollercoaster plan due mainly to noise impacts from rollercoaster passengers' screams on nearby residents.

Four residents, Jeremy Butcher and Suzanne Galwey along with Donal Greene and Clare Smith had brought the case before An Bord Pleanála after Meath County Council gave the plan the green light.


Mr Coyle said today he was “shocked” by the An Bord Pleanála decision. He said: “I couldn’t believe it when I was told.”

Mr Coyle said the new project, which is made up of two rollercoasters, “has the wow factor because we do need to keep the magic going. It is the first of its type in Europe.”

The “Coaster 2021” project comprises a 31 metre high and 748 metre long Suspended Thrill Coaster (STC) and a 24.2 metre high 238 metre long Family Boomerang (FB) ride.

Long-term viability

Planning documentation lodged with the plan state if the rollercoaster doesn’t proceed “the longer-term viability of the park would be brought into question”.

The new plan contains 14 separate noise reduction measures drawn up by Dutch roller-coaster maker, Vekoma which has made roller-coasters across the world such as Space Mountain and Big Thunder Mountain for Disney.

Planning documentation lodged with the Council state Vekoma “are confident that the proposed Coaster 2021 will not have a noise impact within the setting of Tayto Park”.

The noise reduction measures include three noise retention tunnels to mitigate patrons’ screams on the rollercoaster at height and high intensity track positions.

One tunnel is to be modelled on a castle round tower and a second tower is to be modelled with vines.

Tayto Park is to also construct a 106 metre long six metre high sound barrier along the northern boundary of the Tayto Park site.

An Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) lodged with the plan states that the The Coaster 2021 project has been specifically orientated away from residents’ homes to ensure that patrons’ screaming and shouting from the rollercoaster will be directed into Tayto Park and away from residents’ homes.

The noise reduction measures also include a ‘silent chain drive’; a silent roll back system and polyurethane wheel covers to dampen vibrations and contact noise with the rail track.

Home visits

Mr Coyle confirmed that he has visited the homes of the local residents opposed to the previous plan with the new plans in a bid to allay their fears over noise impacts from the rollercoaster. He described the meetings as “very civil and good”.

Planning documents lodged with the application state that if the plan is operational for 2021, visitor numbers will soar to 715,000.

The numbers to attend Tayto Park this year totalled 615,000. Mr Coyle said: “Numbers have been flat the last two or three years and we need to do something about it.”

Twenty five people will be employed during the construction phase and 40 if and when the new Coaster 2021 is operational.

A decision is due on the plan towards the end of January.

Gordon Deegan

Gordon Deegan

Gordon Deegan is a contributor to The Irish Times