By Jonathan Davies

The Alton Towers rollercoaster crash in June could cost the theme park £47 million, the park's owner has said.

Four people were seriously injured - one, 17-year old Leah Washington had her leg amputated - when one carriage on The Smiler ride crashed into another.

Alton Towers was forced to close temporarily.

Merlin Entertainment, which owns the theme park, said the accident had "an adverse impact on trading" at the start of the crucial summer period. The company also suspended advertising for its theme parks in the aftermath.

Merlin said Alton Towers' profits are now likely to be £40-50 million, down from £87m last year.

However, Merlin said cost cutting and better trading meant profits across the whole company are to be "broadly in line" with 2014.

Merlin Entertainment chief executive Nick Varney said it was "appropriate" to suspend advertising after the crash, but insisted that Alton Towers could "rebuild its position as the nation's favourite theme park".

Merlin said: "We have committed to support those injured as best we can and implemented additional safety protocols to be sure that a similar accident will never happen again."

That reassurance failed to impress investors, however, as shares dropped 7% in early trading.