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Play Centre To Open At The Chill Factore

New indoor play centre in Trafford promises to be the largest in the UK

Published on January 11th 2012.

Play Centre To Open At The Chill Factore

INDOOR ski slope, Chill Factore near the Trafford centre has announced plans to open a £2m play centre, creating around 60 new jobs.

Building on the Play Factore, located under the Chill Factore's ski slope, has already started and is planned to open at Easter.  It's promising to be the UK's largest indoor play centre catering for kids aged up to 12 years.

It is to house the country's tallest climbing frame at 16m high and the longest slide at 40m.  Other attractions will include a laser tag arena, football pitch and electric go-karts.  There will also be kids fitness classes, discos and cookery and craft lessons available alongside party rooms to host private birthday celebrations.

2012 01 09 ChillFawad Munir, director of Liverpool-based Play Factore and founder of Merseyside-based indoor play centre Yellow Sub, said: “The Chill Factore site is perfect due to its location off the M60, which means we will reach a wide target audience and broad demographic. The space available means that we have been able to design the centre from scratch and so can offer a far higher quality, safe, progressive environment for children.”

Morwenna Angove, chief executive of Chill Factore, said: “Play Factore will be the most innovative play centre to open in the UK, offering something for everyone and taking indoor play to the next level."

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Jennifer BoydApril 26th 2012.

Please find below my sent complaint letter to this terrible play centre. (No response received to date)
Chill Factore is heaven. Play Factore on the other hand - total hell! Be warned.

"I would like to make a complaint following our visit to your centre today.

We were a party of 4 adults, 4 2 year olds and a babe in arms.

The centre facilties are on a par with our local play centre Head Over Heels although yours seems totally overpriced, esepcially if adults are enforced to pay to "play" on the frames. Perhaps this needs reviewing along with charges for unders 1s!!

Our issue was not with the facilties but with the service from the restaurant/ cafe staff. In particular the European lady with dark hair who seemed to be in charge.

After working our way through the confusing and limited menu aimed more at Italian adults than British toddlers we ordered over £40 of food for lunch. We worked out that that "paste" did not mean a jar of canned meat and ordered some pizzas and anti pasti. The young man on the till who I must say was very polite if confused about what the menu choices were was busy being bossed around by a lady with dark hair in what we felt was a nasty, bullish and patronising manner - we genuinely felt sorry for him. If we were him we would have either been in tears or out of there.

3 of the 4 dishes arrived and to be honest they looked awful. I eat a lot of anti pasta and love it. This version was pitiful for the price. To say 2 tiny scarps of focacia bread would be enough for 2 to share for a start is ridiculous. A poor selection of cheeses and drizzled in some greasy pesto served with grapes? It was truly awful. The other gnocci dish was terrible. A good inch of oil swimming in the bottom of the bowl.

However this was not the main issue either. The 2 childrens pizzas we had ordered did not arrive. 10 minutes later the young man come to ask if we were waiting for these pizzas and we said yes. 5 minutes later the aggressive lady who had been shouting at everyone and stomping around behind the counter with pursed lips then came to ask what we were missing again. 10 minutes later and still no pizzas so I went to the chefs to ask if they were making them. Unfortunatley they had to just wave at me as they do not speak English.

The children were now crying and hungry and we had had to start fending off their appetities with biscuits!! I went to the counter again to ask if the pizzas were coming soon as the kids were upset. This lady was so rude I cannot tell you. None of us could believe our ears and eyes. Without looking up from her pad at me she shouted "yes they are coming".

5 minutes later she came over with the pizzas and angril put them on the table. Looked at us all and exclaimed only that "it's not my fault they didn't tell the kitchen"...........she was angry and irate....so, so rude!! Not at any point did ANYONE apologise for a delay. No "thank you for waiting" etc etc. After she shouted this at us all I replied back that it's not my fault as i am the customer. She turned on her heel and went back to stomping up and down the counter area. How on earth she has a job in customer service is madness. I was a bank manager for many years. I have dealt with thousands of customers and i would not have spoken to a dog like to spoke to us or the other staff.

You seem to have a lot to learn in what makes a good play centre and with such awful service backing up a high entrance fee I am sure the likes of Land Of Play and Head over Heels will be sleeping soundly in their beds!

As another tip - some kids drinks (not in glass bottles perhaps and not Fruit shoot) and perhaps some kiddie flavoured ice creams or some kiddie biscuits and menu options may be an idea?? After all............one may think the facility is for the little ones? Oh - or is that why you charge adults to "play" on the frames.

Yours angrily and out of pocket


Helen WestApril 26th 2012.

I have just returned from a visit to this brand new playcentre with 3 very excited kids and I have to say we have had a similar experience to Jennifer Boyd (see post above). Absolutely tiny portions and really expensive. When the kids lasagne portion that I'd ordered for my 8 year old arrived (priced at £4.80) it was one tablespoon in the middle of a plate with pesto oil drizzled over it! I went up to the counter to complain but everyone just shrugged at me and said that was the portion size. Even worse was the kids pasta & pesto for £6.20 which I had assumed would be a decent portion for that price. OMG it was not even a full mini bowl!

I was told that the manager would come and see me - but I then waited for nearly 15 minutes for the young manager in a sharp suit to chat to the counter staff, make and complete 2 calls on his mobile and then finally come across to see me. He brought with him the same lasagne dish but this time with another spoonful on it. He said they had made a mistake in the portion size (it still wasn't really big enough for the price) but couldn't explain why this hadn't been sorted out when I first mentioned it. He then defended the price of the pasta dishes by saying that all their ingredients were fresh - well with pasta shapes and pesto I think that was a bit ridiculous. He then said that their prices were no higher than some of the other food outlets nearby and cited Carluccio's at the Trafford Centre!!!! I just looked at him and said 'this is a kids playcentre - my expectations are that the prices and portions will be on a par with other good quality playcentres like Head over Heels'! Unbelievable. In total paying the entrance fee (even with the 20% discount promo offer), buying 4 small soft drinks and 3 kids meals I spent £47!!!!! Never once did he apologise, never once did he offer me any sort of compensation, despite the fact that I said I'd be telling all my friends not to have the food.

In truth my kids thought the playcentre equipment was awesome - but we were there on a very quiet evening after school so they had the run of it themselves. It is certainly not worth paying the huge ticket price at weekend, nor can they justify parents having to pay. The only reason you'd go in is if you have toddlers and the playframe is probably too big for them.

Overall I would advise people to boycott the food - it is absolutely scandalous and the service is also sadly lacking. There's always room for family activities - but I really feel Play Factore is displaying an arrogant disregard for customer service. Perhaps they're relying on the location to bring custom - unless they rethink the management style and customer experience they won't be able to rely on repeat business.

EveApril 11th 2013.

Disgusted in just reading these comments we will definitely not be going there , scandalous

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