Cadbury World. A world of Cadbury. An entire planet of Cadbury, if you can imagine such a thing. A world that doesn’t mention Cadbury got bought out a few years ago by Kraft Foods, and likes you to believe that Cadbury in Brum-town is still in the Cadbury Empire and is Nerve-Centre for all things Choc.
Basically what you get from this entire Cadbury World is this:
- A walk through time that shrugs and gives up after a while, plays some dated adverts on tiny screens with tinny speakers, before turning into a pointless fairground ride!
- Some out-of-work actors!
- Some creepy hologram/ghosts bellowing at you!
- Some creepy animatronics bellowing at you!
- A not-very-good factory tour of a factory that doesn’t make chocolate anymore, so you stare at empty machines not doing a job!
- Vast queueing for sod all: A 1mph ride where dancing chocolate beans get on your nerves and a camera takes a photo of your “WTF??” face!
- A badly out-of-sync robot gorilla playing the drums!
- A Cadbury’s Caramel bunny model that practically invites you to smoosh her bunny-boobs!
- A not-very-good playground with screaming kids beating each other up, and a one-speaker tannoy blaring out ‘In the Air Tonight’…!
Added to this are manically grinning attendants who greet you with chirpy Brummie accents. Hearing chirpy worker-drone Brums dealing with woefully disappointed tourist Brums is a remarkable sound, a weird kind of dissonant wailing. Horrible children EVERYWHERE. Children with chocolate smeared over their faces. Children running. Children taking up space. Children pressing all the buttons at once on the interactive exhibits using their entire fists. I nearly blew my fucking lid after being shoved by three little scamps who had neither the instinct nor the inclination to excuse themselves. Went and sat outside after that, refusing to take part in anything else. And everywhere is the stench of chocolate. I got type-2 diabetes from just breathing.
After being pushed and shoved through the underwhelming ‘Cadbury Experience’, I went for an ultra-sulk outside. Discovered that a bottle of water costs £ANALSEX, I crawled towards the nearest tea kiosk. Tea Kiosk was staffed by the loveliest young lady I’ve met in years, who, without introduction, saw my haggard apparition appear in her window and calmly said “Awww, bless! You look like you need a tea!”. I was so pathetically appreciative, I nearly said a number of grateful swear words.
The other high point was when we took a walk around the outside of the factory. This isn’t an official part of the tour, we just needed to kill 15 minutes before our allotted tour began. The outside of a building is one of the day-trip’s high-point? Ho-leee crap.
Low Point: Bit of a list, sorry.
#1. Being given a FISTFUL of chocolate at the beginning of our tour, but not a glass of milk. What kind of fucking Nazi expects you to eat chocolate without having a glass of milk to wash it down??
#2. The “4D” cinema experience that, while you are already nauseous from the free choc, then proceeds to jerk you from side to side whilst feebly hissing compressed air at you. This 4D experience is not to be confused with another 4D experience that Sarah and Alice went on (after I sat down in a rage and sulked myself into an immovable object of grump). The one I took part in was just a history of the company. Why it needed to shake our seats and hiss at us, I haven’t got a Scooby, but it did, and it was crap.
#3. See a sickening little twunt of a boy holding six bars of Dairy Milk, each one the size of the monolith from 2001: A Space Odyssey, and four enormous Toblerone bars, each the size of Cleopatra’s Needle, shove his way into the queue in the Cadbury shop. Hear his father (in the weediest, mimsiest, Brummiest voice imaginable) say “Now Ryan, you ARE going to share some of that chocolate aren’t you? And you’re only going to eat a little bit when we get home?”, only to have Ryan sneer back, “NO. It’s all MINE!”, was one of many last straws. I wanted to possess the body of his timid father, grab little cockface Ryan by the pudgy shoulders, punch the chocolate out of his greedy hands, and drag the little wanker off to the nearest Manners School.
Sadly, I do not have those powers. I cannot possess the living. The father looked defeated when he should have kicked some ass. Ryan will, one day, hopefully need a major operation to clear those blocked arteries.
So, in summary:
Cadbury World. Dispiriting hell where people in dire need of half-term entertainment drag their awful children. A place where they proudly mention that the person who opened this monument to burnt sugar was fucking John Major of all sodding people – not only that, they proudly mentioned this fact TWICE. A place where truly scrummy choccy heaven is reduced to being stuffed into the maw of a blobby, fat, ungrateful brat who is shrieking his way around a boring day out. In this chocolate factory, Augustus Gloop won.
Cadbury World was naff.
- It was completely full of screaming kids and overpriced food, but we’ve been to “fun” parks before, so we were expecting that.
- Queued for 20 minutes for the 4D adventure only to find the ‘Only 40 more minutes to queue!!’ sign. Gave up.
- Walked around the outside of the factory instead.
- Queued for 10 more minutes for our timed tickets. Unhelpful staff told us we couldn’t wait in the queue for 3 o’clock entrance until all the 2:50pm people had entered.
- Walked discontentedly around the shop where fat people were over-indulging their soon-to-be-fat children. Realised I’d lost my usual love for my fellow humans.
- Was given a huge armful of chocolate. This was the best part of the day.
- “Mummy can I have a chocolate bar?”
“OK, Alice darling.”
Dammit. I am point #5.
- Herded around an exhibition on the history of chocolate which started pretty good but soon descended into a fairground ride where we were shook like a husk of chocolate and then sprayed with dry ice as our chocolate got pasteurised.
- “Mummy can I have a chocolate bar?”
“What? You just had one!”
- Queued to have a green-screen photo of us surfing on a chocolate bar. Got cross with myself for doing it. Later, queued some more (why?) to see the bad photo they wanted to charge us £15 for. Ironically, it was quite a good photo of me.
- Went up some stairs and down some stairs. This was good as I was now very full of chocolate. Calories burned. Woo!
- Finally got to see the factory where production closed earlier this year. There were some static machines.
- Queued for 20 more minutes.
- “Mummy, can I have a…?”
“Are you serious, child?”
- What we were queuing for turned out to be a children’s ride about a village full of happy dancing chocolate beans. Half way round Alice said, ” I am going to have weird dreams tonight.”
- Dan’s unhappy “WTF??” face in the end of ride photo was nearly priceless. Well, I say ‘priceless’. Nearly, but probably not worth £15.
- Then came the ‘make your own chocolate’ bit. This was the bit Alice was looking forward to. She’d already postulated the amazing flavours she would try. I am not sure mint and orange juice will catch on but I am willing to give it a go. The people manning the conveyor looked worn down by the half term crowd. They had five flavours (none of them were mint, orange or – my choice – apricot) . We were allowed up to a paltry two flavours, which they dumped into half a cup of melty chocolate and handed us a spoon.
- Ate my melty chocolate. Felt sick.
- Was pushed back through the gift shop again. At this point, seeing all the chocolate bars made my stomach turn. I think my child was feeling the same because, amazingly, she didn’t even ask me to buy her things.
- Found the queue for the 4D experience had gone down and was only going to take another 10 minutes. Dan, by now horribly fed up, refused to come on the ride.
- 4D experience turned out to be the worst computer graphics, rendered no more realistic by their 3Dness. The seats rocked and shook in a mild rollercoaster way. I didn’t vomit.
- Normally, there is a big fight and a cry from Alice (and sometimes Dan) when we leave fun days out to head home. We had barely finished the 4D experience when Alice pleaded: “Can we go home now.?”
If you are thinking of going to Cadbury World, I would recommend you don’t. Save some money. Go to your nearest shop. Buy an armful of chocolate. Eat as much as you can. Melt some of it, and add weird flavours from the kitchen. Try mint, or orange juice or chopped apricots. When you are done, do not go on a rollercoaster, and instead count yourself lucky.