Okay, so admittedly this INSTORE deal isn't going to set the world alight (unless you fill it with hydrogen and then have a barbecue on it...)
But there was a small pallet of at least a dozen Thomas the Tank Engine bouncy castles left in Newbury Sainsburys. I only found these by asking on the off-chance at the GM (general merchandise?) desk of another store, where the staff checked their computer system.
Don't know if it's national, but suspect there may be more lurking around the country (yes, wild goose-chase alert, blah-blah-blah!), but there's no harm in simply asking the next time you're in your local store?
It's the same price as the unbranded bouncy castle currently on sale in Lidl (as of 30 Jun 2014), but a few benefits of this one:
- It doesn't have those big, accident-waiting-to-happen gaps around the edge between the walls and base (not sure if the walls are actually attached to the base though?)
- It's Thomas!
Negatives of this one:
- It's only available instore - ask at the GM (general merchandise?) desk for local availability in surrounding stores.
- It doesn't have the hoop & hoopla extras of the Lidl one.
- It doesn't come with a pump (but nor does it require constant air - it's more akin in design to an inflatable mattress / chair / sheep / etc!)
Has anyone actually tried either of these? Or rather, have your children?...
Hope it helps someone anyway! We've got a 3-year old's "Thomas" party coming up soon, so it only needs to survive a few hours to have made it worth it - but will hopefully last longer in lieu of a trampoline (I know that they're not meant to be as "bouncy" though)
Price / links of past bouncy castle availability:
Sainsburys - £30 - OOS online but now £25 instore (this deal)http://www.sainsburys.co.uk/sol/shop/toys_and_nursery/126912321_thomas-bouncy-castle.htmlhttp://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/thomas-tank-engine-bouncy-castle-sainsburys-30-1927585
Tesco - £40 (£35 with code) - OOS onlinehttp://www.tesco.com/direct/thomas-the-tank-engine-bouncy-castle/210-0251.prd?skuId=210-0251&pageLevel=sku&_requestid=233545http://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/thomas-tank-engine-bouncy-castle-40-00-35-00-with-code-tesco-direct-1927505
Debenhams - £60 - available online (slightly different version)http://int.debenhams.com/ms/product/thomas-the-tank-inflatable-bouncing-castle/171020190699/
Lidl - £24.99 (generic, non-Thomas brand but with hoop & hoopla):http://www.lidl.co.uk/en/our-offers-2491.htm?action=showDetail&id=13928http://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/lidl-bouncy-castle-with-ball-hoop-hoopla-24-99-from-monday-30th-june-1934047