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Huge ferris wheel offers stunning views over South Shields after attraction opens at seafront

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Visitors to a seaside leisure attraction have the chance to take in stunning views of South Tyneside after a huge ferris wheel opened.

The structure has been opened at Ocean Beach Pleasure Park and is set to stay in place for the next couple of months.

New Big Wheel opening at Ocean Beach Pleasure Park, South Shieds on Saturday, and the first passengers were Chris Kelly, Kerry, l-r Courtney (11), Megan (8), Abbie (4) and Leah (9)

New Big Wheel opening at Ocean Beach Pleasure Park, South Shieds on Saturday, and the first passengers were Chris Kelly, Kerry, l-r Courtney (11), Megan (8), Abbie (4) and Leah (9)

Bosses at the park are hoping the new addition, which has previously been in Hong Kong and Swansea, will bring in the crowds as winter turns into spring.

Emma Choudhury, of the park, told the Gazette: “It’s here until Easter now and will of course be able to go on during the school holidays.

“You can see as far along as Souter Lighthouse from the top so there are some great views from 35 metres high up.

“We think it’s a real attraction for the sea front and we’ve already had a lot of great feedback from the public about it.

“We’re doing a Valentine’s Day package on Wednesday from 12pm to 7pm where people will get a ride on the wheel as well as a glass of fizz and a gift too.”

The wheel got the thumbs up from visitors to the park on its opening day.

Craig Kelly, from Blyth, in Northumberland, had a ride alongside partner Kerri and their children Courtney, 11, Leah, nine, Megan, eight and Abbie, four.

Craig said: “We got some really good views when we were up there.

“It was great.

“The kids loved it as well, so much so that they wanted to keep going around.

“The rest of the park is good anyway but this looks great.”

Gary Carr, formerly of South Shields but now living in Shrewsbury, was at the park with children Ben, 10, and Sophie, seven.

“I’ve lived away for 20 years but can’t remember this park having a wheel like this one,” said Gary.

“It looks like a really good attraction, sort of like a mini London Eye.

“We’re staying at Little Haven Hotel and it is the first thing you see when you woke up so it’s quite prominent near the coast.

“I think it’ll see a lot of people getting on, if the weather stays nice anyway.

“The whole leisure park is a great place for the kids to come down too.”