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WITNESS simulation software from the Lanner Group saves Madame Tussauds £2m in capacity planning and guest flow management


MTL is part of the Tussauds Group, one of the world’s leading leisure and entertainment companies. MTL has been a major London tourist attraction since 1835, regularly attracting 2 million guests a year. With its spectacular interactive attractions, which unlock a range of intensely personal emotions, Madame Tussauds London takes you on an emotional rollercoaster by giving Guests the chance to do the things famous people do.

MTL’s business depends on delighting its guests by giving them a magical and memorable experience. The aim is to always achieve this with the highest standards of health and safety. The number and type of visitors and the variability in arrival rates (by time of day, day of week, and time of year) present challenges to the business in maximising throughput and guest enjoyment whilst maintaining safety.

MTL decided to use WITNESS process simulation modelling technology from the Lanner Group to evaluate various options to optimise the guest experience, in particular guest flow and capacity, as well as investigating a particular investment proposal that would have involved a £2m cost to the business.

The use of simulation modelling has traditionally provided excellent return-on-investment in industry sectors such as manufacturing and financial services. Through working with Lanner, such an approach can also deliver real value to the leisure and entertainment industry, as evidenced at MTL.

Lanner’s approach integrates a powerful combination of its leading edge technologies using WITNESS coupled with its considerable consulting experience and proven track record of successful results delivery.

The approach taken in the joint project was to build a dynamic simulation model of Madame Tussauds guest flow to understand the processes behind the flow and queuing system for guests and the capacity considerations at various times of the day. This model would then allow better understanding to support quantifiable evaluation of investment strategy whilst providing invaluable ongoing support to decision-making for future change options.

The ‘Project Freedom’ team, a combination of Lanner and MTL personnel, was created to drive the project. Measurement of key flow parameters was undertaken using cordless bar-code scanners to capture guest dwell times and arrival rates directly into a laptop.


Scenarios were evaluated using WITNESS and this dynamic modelling support from Lanner enabled the ‘Project Freedom’ team to reach a unanimous decision and thus alter the investment strategy. Had the potential solution not been disproved, MTL would have invested more than £2M without getting the desired results.

The Tussauds Group continue to use Lanner’s services on an ongoing basis to inform strategic planning, optimise flow and capacity, and help deliver a magical guest experience!

“Working together with the non-compromise agreement that everything must be ‘WOW’, we have achieved amazing results that will support the World’s greatest city-centre attraction to become even greater in terms of guest care (no compromise) and financial performance (no compromise).

On a personal note, John and all the Lanner team have become part of our team and I could not have dreamt of a better relationship. I have loved every second of this WOW project - Thank you!”

James Bradbury General Manager Madame Tussauds 

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