Alton Towers Resort has confirmed that Wicker Man – the first wooden rollercoaster to be built in the UK for more than 20 years – will officially open to the public on Saturday.

The new white-knuckle ride is the world's first roller coaster to combine wood and fire and thrill-seekers can take their place on the new attraction on March 17.

Aerial footage filmed in the dead of night of shows a giant ram structure appear to burst into flames as carriages pass by on the tracks.

The dramatic images show the track of the new wooden rollercoaster

It has now been revealed the six-storey, £16 million structure at Alton Towers will open to the public for the first time on Saturday, March 17.

Every ride will house two trains, each made up of six wooden carriages carrying 12 passengers, meaning there will be 24 passengers per ride.

Before boarding Wicker Man, riders will embark on a journey into the world of the Beornen, a secret community living in the woods around Alton.

Lured in by chanting, rhythmic sounds and unseen eyes watching them, guests will "be chosen" to take part in the cinematic "pre show" before braving the ride itself.

The structure has a human face on one side and a ram's head on the other

John Wardley – legendary rollercoaster developer and the man behind iconic rides including Nemesis, Oblivion and The Smiler at Alton Towers – said: "What Alton Towers have done is created a fabulous, fast-paced, smooth, thrilling, exhilarating ride which is beautifully and imaginatively presented to a standard far higher than probably any other 'woodie' in the world."

Alton Towers has also released some more facts about the ride ahead of its opening.

These are:

  • Laid end-to-end, 30km of timber has been used in the creation of Wicker Man;
  • 1.8 million screws and 65,000 bolts have been used as part of the build
  • The area around Wicker Man has been landscaped with 1,500 tonnes of topsoil and 400kg of grass seed

To be one of the first to experience Alton Tower's newest thrill attraction Wicker Man when it opens on Saturday, March 17, visit to secure your ticket.