800 applicants for park jobs

The boss of one of Lancashire’s biggest employers has been left ‘staggered’ after receiving more than 800 job applications in a month.

Around two hundred temporary jobs are being created at Camelot Theme Park in Charnock Richard, near Chorley, in time for the park’s opening in April.

But within a month of launching a recruitment drive, the man at the helm of the popular theme park says he has been blown away by the level of interest after receiving four times as many applications as jobs on offer.

Mark Leader, operations Director of Knight’s Leisure, the firm which runs the park, said: “The number of people who applied both delighted and staggered us.

“Camelot is open for business again on April 9 so we have had a very busy time in the lead-up, reading through applications and filling the positions. The response was terrific.”

The successful applicants will take up roles including food shop assistants, ride operators, park patrols, shop assistants and assistant manager at the park’s shops and food outlets. The jobs will run to early September.

Bosses at the centre have set their sights on getting 200,000 visitors through the doors of the Medieval-themed park this year, with investment in a series of new attractions.

Top of the list is the new ‘King Arthur’s Birds of Prey and Animal Centre’, which includes flying displays from eagles, owls, vultures and hawks.

The park underwent £500,000 investment last summer from its owners, Cumbria-based The Story Group, which bought the site when former owners Prime Resorts went into administration in summer 2009.

The 140-acre park temporarily shut down, but was re-opened last May and Knight’s Leisure, headed by former Camelot boss Roy Page and Mr Leader, was appointed to run the park.

However, the park’s long-term future is still uncertain with the current owners indicating they ultimately plan to transform the site into a major housing development.