Amanda currently sits on the board of directors of the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA). Following her leadership of the European, Middle East and Africa advisory board, 2017 saw her nominated to begin ascension to lead the global attractions industry trade association in 2020 as Chairman of the Board.
Amanda has been a dedicated and involved IAAPA member for decades. She has served two terms on the IAAPA Board of Directors chairing the IAAPA Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) Regional Advisory Committee. She has also served as a member of IAAPA’s executive finance, membership, and entertainment committees.
Keeping up a long and honourable family tradition, Pleasure Beach Blackpool Managing Director – Amanda Thompson, has followed in the footsteps of her father, grandfather and great-grandfather, to continue building on the phenomenal success of Britain’s favourite tourist attraction.
The great-granddaughter of Pleasure Beach founder William George Bean, Amanda Thompson became Managing Director in 2004, having previously served as Deputy Managing Director of the family company since 2000 and as a Director for over 15 years. As MD, Amanda has become one of the few gifted females to hold the title in the amusement park industry and in fact runs the largest theme park in the world in comparison to her contemporaries.
Amanda is also President of Stageworks Worldwide Productions, an entertainment and production company she formed in 1982 to present spectacular live shows on stage and ice.
Amanda was born in London in 1962 and was brought up in the world of entertainment. She made her debut performance in a children’s ice show, aged three.
With more than twenty years experience producing and directing shows, Amanda has brought Stageworks to the very forefront of live entertainment, creating outstanding productions for venues worldwide. In 2002 she was awarded the prestigious Michael Elliott Trust Awards ‘Director of the Year’ for her contribution to live entertainment.
As a member of the board of directors of the international association of amusement parks and attractions (IAAPA) she has been instrumental in leading the attractions industry and has served two terms as chairman of the IAAPA Europe advisory board, before being nominated to lead the global industry in 2020. Amanda also holds positions on the board of the famous grand theatre in Blackpool, and works as a patron of the civic trust and member of the British Association of Leisure Parks, Piers and Attractions (BALPPA). In 2007 Amanda received the commitment to industry award at the Lancashire Excellence in Tourism Skills Awards and continued on to win the 2009 ‘Special Recognition Award’ at the Blackpool Tourism Awards.
Her love for the amusement park industry is clearly reflected in the recent changes seen at Blackpool Pleasure Beach – from the installation of new and thrilling rides such as ICON the UK’s first double-launch rollercoaster, to the spectacular dancing water shows and a magnificent sculpture garden. Blackpool Pleasure Beach can be seen as a heritage amusement park, which will evolve over time and continue to beat expectations.
In February 2004, Amanda married Stephen Thompson.
Amanda Thompson was awarded the OBE for her services to tourism in Her Majesty the Queen’s 2012 New Year’s Honours list.
Blackpool Pleasure Beach
Order of the British Empire (OBE)
Stageworks Worldwide Productions
Second Vice Chairman in 2018
First Vice Chairman in 2019
Chairman of the Board in 2020
Big Blue Hotel
Patron of the
Grand Theatre Blackpool
Patron of the