Restaurant Tech Live blog post 1

Brighton Pier Group recently acquired Lethington Leisure - a mini golf business with six sites throughout the UK - for the sum of £10.5m. 

Entrepreneur and Brighton Pier Group owner Luke Johnson believes there is a future in traditional family entertainment as long as it is appropriately updated by incorporating more modern elements. 

"I think traditional amusements are being reinvented for a new generation, because I think people don't want to spend all their leisure time on a screen - they want to get out of the home and socialise," explained Mr Johnson on BBC Radio 4's Today programme.

"A competitive fun family game of golf is, I think, a pretty good option," he said, identifying leisure centres as ideal for Lethington’s growth plans.

"Shopping centres need to drive traffic because of online shopping. Attractions will get customers to come to the shopping centre. Increasingly I think shipping centres will become leisure centres too."

The British Association of Leisure Parks, Piers and Attractions’ CEO, Paul Kelly, identified the need to embrace interactivity in order to salvage the future of traditional attractions, yet he recognised there has been a surge in the popularity of indoor play centres and farming attractions. 

Kelly points out the success of Adventure Island Mini Golf in Birmingham and Hastings Adventure Golf in integrating an interactive element to a traditional leisure activity, as they have recently inserted microchips into their golf balls that allow players to track their live scores by downloading a mobile app.

"Any new attraction being considered or being built at the moment will have a certain degree of technology or interactivity - it's a big consideration,” said Mr Kelly.

"All of our operators appreciate it is a challenge and they have to work harder to get people to visit their attraction.”

"It has to be a nice experience, good quality products and good value for money, and unless you have all of it, it won't work as a package."

Source: BBC News