On December 18, 2023, the theme park world was abuzz with the news that Universal was considering building a new theme park in the United Kingdom. Universal reportedly purchased a whopping 500 acres near Bedford — about 45 miles north of London.
Earlier this year, The Sun also reported that Comcast (which owns Universal) and Universal had purchased and registered the web domain names UniversalStudiosGreatBritain.com and UniversalGreatBritain.com.
Now, we can confirm that Universal did in fact purchase the land and a spokesperson said that they are considering building a theme park in the United Kingdom!
The Bedford Independent reported that they spoke with a Universal spokesperson, who confirmed the purchase and the potential of a new theme park:
A spokesperson from Universal Destinations & Experiences told the Bedford Independent, “We recently acquired land in Bedford [Borough] and are at the early stages of exploring its feasibility for a potential park and resort at this site.
“It will be many months before we are ready to make a decision to proceed and we look forward to engaging with all relevant stakeholders and the local community.”
They said that no creative content of the park has yet been determined and stressed that “we are still very early in planning this potential project.”
Universal is largely considered Disney’s primary theme park competitor and is working tirelessly to become as in-demand as vacation destinations like Walt Disney World Resort in Florida and Disneyland Resort in California. And many think that they are quickly catching up.
In 2022, Universal Studios Japan was the third most visited theme park in the world. Universal’s Islands of Adventure was the fifth most visited theme park.
Universal is currently building its third theme park at the Universal Orlando Resort — Epic Universe. The new park is scheduled to open in the summer of 2025. Epic Universe is expected to have another land dedicated to the Harry Potter franchise, which would make it the third land themed around the boy wizard at the resort.
Universal’s massive new theme park will also have SUPER NINTENDO WORLD — a larger version of the one that recently opened at Universal Studios Hollywood. There will also be areas dedicated to classic Universal monsters like Dracula and Frankenstein, as well as a land themed after the popular How to Train Your Dragon franchise.
Universal currently has theme parks in Orlando, Florida; Los Angeles, California; Beijing, China; Osaka, Japan; and Singapore. They are also currently building a Universal Kids Resort in Frisco, Texas.
Would you love to see Universal build a resort in the UK? Let us know in the comments!