Family on amusement park ride

Excited family having fun on amusement park rollercoaster

By Carl Hagemann, General Manager, ADIPS

This year, ADIPS celebrates its 20th anniversary. That’s two decades of working to keep people safe on amusement park and fairground rides. It’s something I and the members of ADSC (Amusement Devices Safety Council) are really proud of.

Where did it all start? The ADSC was launched in 2003 to monitor and improve the safety of people working on fairgrounds, as well as those visiting them. It came off the back of the Fairgrounds Joint Advisory Committee (FJAC), and today comprises major trade organisations involved in the UK amusements and fairground industry, including:

  • The National Association for Leisure Industry Certification (NAFLIC)
  • The Showmen’s Guild of Great Britain (SGGB)
  • The Society of Independent Roundabout Proprietors (SIRPS)
  • The Association of Independent Showmen (AIS)
  • The British Amusement Catering Trade Association (BACTA)
  • The Amusement Catering Equipment Society (ACES)
  • The Amusement and Leisure Equipment Suppliers of the UK (ALES-UK)

In 2003, the Fairground Joint Advisory Committee also decided there should be a limited company for administering the Amusement Devices Inspection Procedures Scheme (ADIPS) and be its commercial arm. And here we are today, a not-for-profit company limited by guarantee.

We channel any surplus income generated back into the industry to promote and enhance safety standards. ADIPS Ltd is responsible for the administration of the ADIPS scheme, including the registration of approved inspection bodies and handling complaints. We also manage the system for issuing declarations of operational compliance (DOC) to ride controllers.

The ADSC committee meets formally four times a year to discuss matters of mutual interest relating to safety on amusement parks and fairgrounds. The committee’s stated objectives are:

  • To promote and improve amusement park and fairground safety, through rules and procedures relating to the inspection of amusement devices.
  • To administer and manage ADIPS
  • To provide appropriate guidance and training for registered inspection bodies and those in the fairground and amusement park industry

So, this is what we and ADSC do and this year, we are marking our 20th year.

Immense contribtution

Now, you could take the attitude that it’s just another year. If you’re like me, you keep a low profile when your birthday approaches. But milestones in our lives are always an opportunity to press pause and reflect.

Since the turn of the year, I’ve been thinking about the immense contribution fairgrounds and amusement parks make to society. Today, we’re all on smartphones and have all sorts of ways to keep ourselves entertained, and yet amusement parks and fairgrounds continue to be a hugely popular part of our lives. Families still look forward to their local fair or a trip to an amusement park. The bright lights, the adrenaline rush of the rides and of course the candy floss. We all love fairgrounds and amusements.

In 2023, ADIPS wants to celebrate and showcase our amusement parks and fairgrounds and raise awareness of what goes on behind the scenes to make sure people can have fun safely.

We will be talking to amusement park operators and showmen up and down the country to highlight the important work being done to ensure the rides are safe. This is what ADIPS and the ADSC are all about. Since 2003, the scheme, our inspectors and the association have played a vital role in the continued success of fairgrounds and amusement parks, but the people who really make the difference are those operating the parks and fairgrounds.

When we talk about ‘the fun of the fair’ we tend not to think about the effort that goes on to ensure everyone enjoys the rides and everything else safely. So thank you to all members of the ADIPS scheme for your continue support, and we look forward to working with you in 2023.