Archive for February, 2009

Cadbury World

Sunday, February 8th, 2009

Over the weekend I thought I’d treat Jakki to see how the love of her life is made… no not a porno, or that awful ‘birds n bees’ video from high school – it was in fact good old Cadbury World in Bourneville.
Started off with a shock on the entry fees, an adult ticket will cost you some £13.45 of your hard earned cash, let alone the children’s fee of £10.30; all making a family day out extremely expensive I should think. None the less we decided to enter the choctastic world of Cadbury.
For the fee you get a packet of Buttons and Curly Wurly on entry and a Dairy Milk Bar half way around the tour which consists of;
Aztec Jungle
A brief history into how important the bean was to the Aztecs and that it was used as a source of payment for food, drink and even slavery. Sadly doesn’t include a taste of the Aztecs original secret recipe of the Chocolatl, which used spices instead of the common milk which we have come accustomed to.
мебели сливенJourney to Europe
How the Spaniards killed off the Aztecs and returned with the cacoa beans which became a source of drink for the wealthy. Had a clever 3D projection system with a little story line.
Bull Street
A replica layout of a small shop in Birmingham where John Cadbury first sold tea of all things. Allowed the opportunity to take photos whilst waiting for an 8 minute show…
The Cadbury story
The story told by Mr Cadbury and then how his two sons Richard and George progressed with the family trait away from the city and developed the village that is still here today, Bourneville. Quite inspiring, listening to the way they explain their ‘Quaker‘ beliefs helped them create a better class of working.
Making Chocolate
From delivery of the beans, to the separation of the liquids to the milk chocolate we eat, it is all explained here with a few little surprises… If you don’t want to know, move your eyes to the next subject, otherwise, it’s not much to get excited over but it is quite comical feeling like a cocoa bean for a few minutes, from some pressured gas bit which I missed but made most of us jump, to being shook vigorously and then baked it was all a giggle!
Manufacturing
Bit of a disappointing area, this has now been moved to an interactive video, which still gives a good insight into the manufacturing of our favourites such as Roses, Buttons, Crunchie, Turkish Delight, Dairy Milk, Cream Egg… but it’s not like seeing the real thing.

Moving around the factory
Whilst moving around the factory there are all sorts of interactive things to do and see, but none as exciting as having your photo with erm, erm, what have they done!!!
Jakki, Nick and the Bean!
Packaging
Sadly came through the packaging department whilst the production was limited, they gave us the feel for something going on but I’m sure this was just a few boxes on a circular! None the less, this was a little interesting to me as we work in production environments and it was amazing seeing how things come together in other fields of work, particularly the speedy wrapping process.
Cadabra
Now this is one not to be missed, how sad, funny yet totally pointless is this ride… Most definitely for the kids, but just looking at how many different themes and facial expressions someone can think of for a cocoa bean is somewhat amazing!!! Particularly look out for the abdominal snowbean! – oh and don’t forget to smile for the camera here again!
Demonstration Area
A little over crowded for my liking, but there were 3-4 demonstrations going on, from tempering, to moulding to writing all with chocolate of course! Opposite this is the process for creating mouldings such as the Teddy Bears, Shoes etc, this was a little more interesting but slow!
Advertising
First of all you get to walk through the Coronation street chocolate set and get the opportunity to go through interactive screens again to see all of the adverts produced for the show. Amazing how much detail when into an add, including the right amount of cobble stones, to all the cast plus a special competition winner. Next part of advertising seemed to lack a lot of the history, I should imagine there are some adverts over the years but this could have been more interesting by covering more adverts. None the less they dated back to the first one in the 50s to more recent 90s.
Purple Planetonline casino
Didn’t seem like much was going on here, but it seemed to be a modern style of interaction, including screen sensitive movement, cocoa bean growing, chasing an egg on the floor, the Purple Planet itself in a clever 3D world and a see yourself made out of chocolate, or as this seemed to be for us was ‘American Megatrends’ artistic display – doh, another reboot (from home to home!!).
backgammon free casino money free craps game play free black jack craps video poker strategy play black jack online how to win video poker casino game online uk best casino online casino secure online gambling jackpot casino online casino black jack learn to play craps how to win at video poker craps online blackjack casino game online casino betting free on line video poker casino games no download casino online gambling casino play free casino slots video poker machine bonus video poker free on line slots double bonus video poker free video poker games free casinos roulette online craps rules free on line casino rules of craps online casino free money blackjack 21 internet casino how to play craps free casino game download fortunelounge online casino free casino download free casino card game free roulette game free casino play no deposit free money casino internet casino online The World’s Biggest Cadbury Shop … Apparently!!
Last but not least, its the shop, the ‘worlds biggest’ apparently, well doesn’t say much about the others!!! Although the choices were varied, from your normal chocolates, an impressive 5kg bar;
Yes a 5kg bar
;That is about 30mm tall! to the Gorilla or Caramel Bunny, pjs to pens, T-shirt to mugs or a really small discount chocolate factory but it wasn’t all that impressive to be honest.
Cafe
The cafe seemed quite good, from having things like soup, to Paninis to Sunday lunches to ‘any 5 items’ which was great for kids and grown ups too. The choices of deserts were the ones to look out for and of course far more tempting. Although not a fan of mouse, I had to try one looking at them and I was suitably impressed. 2 large Cokes, 2 Paninis and 2 Mouses cost around £14 which wasn’t too bad, it filled a hole!!!

All in all not a bad day out, for me I enjoyed seeing the history of the company but would have enjoyed seeing more of the manufacturing; after all that is what they do best!
I’d say;
7/10 Price,
8/10 Time spent,
9/10 Interesting,
9/10 Interaction
7/10 Queues
9/10 Smiles

What’s all the fuss!

Thursday, February 5th, 2009

Got up at 6 this morning after realising it had snowed some several inches in Redditch overnight. Got onto the roads about 6.20 and suddenly felt uneasy, it was probably the first time in my 7 years of driving all roads were fully snowed in, let alone the fact I was in a rear wheel drive for it too!!!
After circling a few roads around my area I decidied to bare the streets to Birmingham city centre. Immediately becoming gobsmacked by other peoples driving, I had only gone some 100 yards and there was an Escort right up my rear, refusing to use my brakes I slowed gradually using my gears and it worked great.
Pulling away in 3rd still seemed to cause my rear to slip and slide but gently pulling away I managed to do it without getting in a spin.
I had travelled about 1.5 miles in 10 minutes and I was still being amazed by some peoples attitude towards the snow; a 4×4 may pull you better in the snow but it doesn’t mean you can stop any better!!! I had a Freelander so close to me, I couldn’t see his lights, whilst doing about 30-40mph.
None the less, I managed to get into work unscathed in about an hour, just over twice my normal time but I feel so much better for doing it, it was a great experience and valuable for future driving.
It was a scary but fun drive in, recommend it to anyone, just be sensible and use your gears not your brakes.

Sorion makes news!!!

Tuesday, February 3rd, 2009

During the current automotive crisis it is good to see that Sorion has made the news for its success… Sort of!!!

Sorion brings cheer ahead of auto industry summit is a small article which appeared in the Birmingham Post on Monday 2nd February 2009, a time when businesses such as Honda have just stopped production for 4 months due to the downturn.

Also in the news;
Birmingham engineering firm Sorion wins £400,000 deal.

Newpaper Article

Promising times ahead then hopefully.