On November 5th, a date famously remembered for Guy Fawkes' attempt to blow up the British Parliament, the UK celebrates with Firework Night, or Bonfire Night, as some prefer. Alton Towers, a theme park known for seizing the spectacle of fireworks, hosts its own event fittingly called Alton Towers Fireworks.

Rewinding to November 5th, 2022, a momentous occasion for fans of Alton Towers and especially for enthusiasts of Nemesis, the park’s iconic B&M inverted coaster. Following the fireworks finale, the big screens displayed a message from the Phalanx, a fictional organization created by Alton Towers' storytellers to enhance the Nemesis narrative. The Phalanx, depicted as a shadowy corporation, was shown announcing the closure of Nemesis due to its "abnormal behaviour."

The 2022 Fireworks annoucement

The audience was then led to Forbidden Valley, where actors portraying Phalanx's private army and scientists added to the immersive experience. This marked the last ride on the original Nemesis track before its closure for the 2023 refurbishment, a dramatic event steeped in the coaster's lore.

Fast forward to November 5th, 2023, Alton Towers’ marketing team had effectively hyped the reopening of Nemesis Sub Terra, alongside various campaigns enriching the Nemesis backstory. Prior to the fireworks, a video was released depicting the Nemesis creature's escape, with fencing near the construction site dramatically torn down, adding to the suspense.

That evening, rollercoaster enthusiasts, fuelled by social media rumours, eagerly gathered in Forbidden Valley, expecting a significant announcement at 8 PM. What unfolded will forever be etched in UK theme park lore. Contrary to expectations, no announcement came. Amid the gathered crowd, a member of the Phalanx had to improvise, stating, "There is no new announcement, nothing will be announced today, the Phalanx has everything under control."

This anti-climax sparked a wave of amusement and memes on social media platforms, particularly X (formerly Twitter). The absence of any real news, while disappointing for some who missed their last night rides of 2023, has become a humorous anecdote in the UK theme park community, a reminder of the unpredictability and charm of fan rumours.