– BEX LOWE
How to Create Confidence and Pioneer Prosthetics ABOVE Medical Prosthetic Feet
It’s not unusual to see a Modelmaking graduate working somewhere like Merlin Entertainments, but you do a lot more than just make. Tell us a little about your role. I’m a workshop and installation team leader at Merlin. I work with lots of theme parks, but right now I’m working on Scarefest for Alton Towers. I manage the team of eight that construct the mazes. During my first year I just worked on the construction side of things, so I was given jobs to build. This year they promoted me and I learnt quickly on the job. This year has been more about risk assessments, CDM Regulations, wood orders and fabric orders. Unless you run your own company you don’t always think of those things. It’s a big step up and we have such tight turnarounds to work to.
Bex Lowe graduated from BA (Hons) Modelmaking in 2014 with an innovative idea that changed the way people saw prosthetic limbs. She explains how she's able to carry on a very personal project alongside her work at Merlin Entertainments. 044 — 045
Part of my role involves ensuring that new employees are fully workshop trained—inducting and assessing them on workshop machinery. It involves managing and distributing my time between making and creating products and being involved in the core work of a production, as well as ensuring that other members of the team are utilising their time and managing their creative skillsets. The mazes at Scarefest have a seriously strong reputation among theme park and horror enthusiasts. How do you go
about making them and ensuring they continue to scare year-on-year? We’ve got four mazes this year, two of which are brand new. We work with other teams—like lighting—and we all get together with the head of entertainment to pitch theme ideas. This year, one of the mazes is all about skin snatchers—a group of people who go underground into mines that want to make the perfect body, so they skin people.
I WAS SAT AT HOME ON THE SOFA WITH LATEX SKIN THAT I WAS STITCHING TOGETHER. MY MUM WALKED IN AND SAID, ‘I’M NOT EVEN GOING TO ASK!’ You get used to moments like that. We’re making this big wheel contraption for Freak Show, which is one of our scare zones. It spins and it’s got claws—it’s nuts! To me it’s just a job but people sometimes walk into the workshop and say, ‘What is that?!’ It’s great to see the process the whole way through—the context, the designing and the building. We go through and design each room working with the technicians and we ask a lot of questions. What effect will be here? Will there be a drawbridge or steam vents? We think through locations for the actors as well. We need to keep coming up with ways that the scare