Grace Dent and Ansley Harriot for channel 4, Best of Britain by the Sea.
THE ORIGINAL END OF THE PIER AMUSEMENTS
PETER WILLIAMSON’S AMAZING VINTAGE AMUSEMENT PENNY MACHINES
Peter Williamson has been collecting and restoring these amazing vintage amusement machines since 1988 and has amassed one of the largest operating collections in the country.
- Play the simple allwin (flick ball) machines
- Try the cheeky “what the Butler Saw”
- Enjoy the timeless one-armed bandits
- Laugh along with the “Laughing Sailor”
- Marvel at the “Working Models”
All these machines are available to play at one of our two locations Wroxham Miniature Worlds and Great Yarmouth Merrivale Model Village where you can purchase “old penny tokens” to take you back to those nostalgic times of yesteryear.
A Great local interest story
For the first time in decades performing monkeys return to Norfolk,
But not real ones that is. Peter Williamson of the “Williamsons original end of the Pier penny arcades” based here in Norfolk restores and operates vintage amusement machines from the 1920s up to the 1970s for tourists and locals alike to enjoy.
This amazing, much sort after and very rare machine is called a Bimbo Box which was made in 1958 by UTA Elektroakustik of Stuttgart.
This very machine was delivered new to the Thomas amusement arcade in Hunstanton and remained in their ownership until Peter Williamson fought off stiff competition at auction in 2021 from collectors in Holland, Germany and even America to keep this much loved machine here in Norfolk.
The Bimbo Box has gone through a complete restoration but keeping as much of its original charm as possible, two of the monkeys internal mechanisms had failed so they packed their bags with the other 5 monkeys and went to Scotland to be repaired by the famous House of Automata run by Maria and Michael Start who carried out all the repairs and cleaned the others so they now look superb again. You may well recognise Maria and Michael as they quite often appear on Salvage Hunters the Restorers along with Drew Pritchard.
This amazing group of performing Copacabana monkeys are now entertaining visitors at Miniature Worlds tourist attraction in Hoveton. The cost to these 7 clever little monkeys to perform is £1.00
Filmed for her Channel 5 programme
The Old Penny Arcade has recently been visited by Susan Calman for her Channel 5 programme.
The show also features one of the town’s quirkier attractions, when Susan stops by the model village and The Old Penny Arcade.
The displays might be small but the village itself isn’t – it stretches for more than an acre and features a busy town centre, village inn, farm, travelling fair, sports stadium, zoo and beach.
It’s a sight to behold in the summer sunshine.
New attraction for 2023 at Wroxham Miniature Worlds
The Old Penny Arcade owner Peter Williamson is very proud to announce the purchase and full restoration of this Mayfeilds Puppet Machine from the late 1960s , it is now on display along side his Pelham Puppet Collection and can be played for just £1.00 a go.
You can contact Peter through the web site is you have any Pelham Puppets you wish to sell.
We wish to buy all and any early mechanical amusement machines to add to the Old Penny Arcade collection to restore and bring out for the public to play again.
Whether you’ve got one machine or a barn-full, get in touch.
LOCATIONS & MACHINES
AVAILABLE FOR TV AND FILM WORK
The Old Penny Arcade has recently been visited by Susan Calman for her Channel 5 programmed in Great Yarmouth.
Peter Williamson is also available for TV and press interviews, having been recently interviewed by Larkin Gowen on their podcast. Look out for his appearance on Salvage hunters the restorers!
Rebecca Pritchard from Salvage Hunters the Restorers
Salvage Hunter Serkan
BASED IN NORFOLK
FIND US IN WROXHAM AND GREAT YARMOUTH
MERRIVALE MODEL VILLAGE
Merrivale is a typical reflection of the English countryside in miniature, just over one acre in extent. It has its own busy town centre, as well as its perfectly kept village inn, farm, travelling fair, sports stadium, zoo, holiday park, castle and cottages set against an attractive scenic background.
WROXHAM MINIATURE WORLDS
WMW is the largest indoor modelling attraction in the UK stretching over 10,000 square feet with some of the largest model railways in the world on permanent public display. The attraction is made up of many zones including model railways, slot car displays, and a whole city made from LegoTM bricks.