CADBURY WORLD Merlin Takeover Begins.


Cadbury World – Birmingham’s very own decadent, choctastic family attraction officially began operation under new ownership yesterday (Monday 09th January 2023).

The change of ownership comes as a result of the buy out by world renown Leisure operator Merlin Entertainments early last year.

The transfer of ownership was first announced back in February of 2022 and was originally due to take place by Summer last year, however due to numerous delays the transfer instead took place on Monday this week.

Cadbury World first opened to the public back in 1990 and takes guests on a mouth watering journey deep into the heart of the iconic chocolate brand’s history.

The attraction features a 4D chocolate Experience, a tasting zone and a full range of in house demonstrations carried out by the site’s fully qualified team of chocolatiers.

On average Cadbury World is said to receive an annual foot fall of up to 600,00 visitors per year making it one of the UK’s most popular family attractions.

Although similar attractions such as the York Chocolate Story have opened in recent times, Cadbury World still remains one of the countries most iconic chocolate covered tourist attractions to this day.

"On average Cadbury World is said to receive an annual foot fall of up to 600,00 visitors per year"

The attraction is currently closed and is set to reopen to the public on January the 25th, however it is not yet confirmed whether Merlin plan to include Cadbury World in it’s list of attractions available to pass holders.

Regardless, Merlin Entertainments are now responsible for the day to day running of the attraction, the care of it’s staff and any operational decisions which may need to be made.

This therefore probably means that we can expect to see some pretty major changes in how the attraction operates over the coming years including possible changes, new additions and more.

Talking about the recent takeover, Fiona Eastwood – Merlin’s Chief Operating Officer for Midway Attractions and Resort Theme Parks has said;

“This addition to our strong portfolio of brands is an evolution of our long-standing partnership with Cadbury across a range of experiential activities and retail spaces in our UK theme parks, and forms part of our ongoing strategy of partnering with household name IPs to create exciting immersive experiences for our guests around the world. We are excited to welcome the Cadbury World team into Merlin and work closely with them to accelerate the attraction’s momentum, entering the next stage in bringing Cadbury World’s iconic, immersive chocolatey experiences to life with an extra sprinkling of Merlin magic in the years to come.”

As stated above, the presence of Cadbury products at Merlin owned parks and attractions is nothing new and this is showcased perfectly by the Cadbury Suite at the Alton Towers Hotel.

The chocolate brand is considered by many to be one of the nation’s favourites and as such the possibilities for future additions at the attraction seems endless as they will almost certainly prove popular no matter what they may be.

"We are excited to welcome the Cadbury World team into Merlin and work closely with them to accelerate the attraction’s momentum”

The takeover of Cadbury World will also mean that Merlin Entertainments have usage rights at any attraction UK wide in any form or way they may choose.

This could well mean that Cadburys becomes a much more common and prominent presence at the companies parks and attractions in the years ahead than we have seen previously.

Taking charge of operation at an existing attraction is nothing new to Merlin either given their recent takeover of Blackpool’s iconic indoor water park – The Sandcastle in an operational capacity earlier last year.

Are you excited by the attraction’s change in hands? Do you think it will be a good thing? Or are you worried it could spell trouble for Cadbury World in the long run?

We’d love to hear your thoughts on this rather chocolatey subject in the comments below!