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  • For a second consecutive year Coca-Cola, in partnership with Coca-Cola Europacific Partners, and Merlin Entertainments are offering the chance to win VIP experiences at some of the UK’s best-known attractions in exchange for empty plastic bottles
  • The partnership will continue to incentivise and encourage recycling via reverse vending machines situated at the attractions
  • This summer, more machines will be situated at family favourite Merlin attractions, including Alton Towers Resort, LEGOLAND® Windsor Resort and Chessington World of Adventures Resort


26 June 2023, London: This summer, for a second consecutive year, thrill-seekers will be in with a chance of winning VIP experiences at some of the UK’s best-known family attractions in exchange for simply bringing along an empty 500ml plastic bottle and recycling it at one of the specifically designed reverse vending machines across Merlin Entertainments UK attractions.


This year, prizes are bigger and better than ever before, including a VIP behind the scenes tour and experience in Sharkbait Reef by SEA LIFE at Alton Towers Resort, a VIP Giraffe Feed Experience at Chessington World of Adventures Resort in connection with the Chessington Conservation Fund, a shark feed at the Deep Sea Adventure at LEGOLAND® Windsor Resort in connection with the SEA LIFE Trust, plus conquering the 127ft climb of one of the UK’s tallest roller-coasters, THE SWARM at THORPE PARK Resort. Families and friends all across the UK will have access to these brilliant prizes by recycling one 500ml drink and will get the chance to win a once-in-a-lifetime prize, in exchange for helping Coca-Cola on its mission to collect and recycle a bottle for every one it sells by 2030.


Offering guests the chance to be part of the action and enter between the 1st July and 30th September 2023, 28 reverse vending machines will be on site at 11 participating Merlin Entertainments attractions, including Alton Towers Resort, LEGOLAND® Windsor Resort, THORPE PARK Resort, Chessington World of Adventures Resort, Warwick Castle, SEA LIFE aquariums in Blackpool, Birmingham, Brighton and London, The Blackpool Tower, and LEGOLAND® Discovery Centre Birmingham.


The innovative vending machines will have quirky and themed designs relating to each prize on offer. Four extra machines have been installed across a number of attractions since last year to make them easy for guests to find and be in with a chance of winning. Machines can also be found by asking staff members at the attraction or using the individual attraction’s app, guiding guests through the parks to recycle their bottles and enter the VIP competition via a website printed on the receipt after recycling.


The partnership continues Coca-Cola’s ongoing relationship with Merlin Entertainments, which has seen over 100,000 plastic bottles collected via the reverse vending machines since they were first introduced in 2019.


Jo Padwick, Senior Sustainability Manager at Coca-Cola Europacific Partners GB, said: Merlin’s attractions are the perfect destination for friends and family to enjoy during the summer months. We are excited to add even more to guests’ experiences for a second year in a row, with exciting prizes available to win as a reward for recycling their empty Coca-Cola drinks bottles. Our partnership with Merlin is one of the ways we are ensuring all our packaging is collected, reused or recycled as part of a circular economy. This closely follows our campaign with the SEA LIFE Trust to run a national beach clean aligned with World Oceans Day.”


Elodie Peribere, Marketing Director at Coca-Cola Great Britain, said: “This summer, reverse vending machines will be located across Merlin attractions which will enable guests to recycle their plastic bottles to ensure they can be used again as well as giving people the chance to win some amazing VIP experiences. We share Merlin’s passion for entertainment and goals for sustainability: all of our bottles are 100% recyclable, and this year we added attached caps across our portfolio to make it easier for people to recycle the whole package and help reduce littering.”


Dare Ilori, Group Sustainability Director at Merlin, said: “Plastic waste remains a long-term environmental issue and we are committed to raising awareness and helping establish solutions to address it. As a global company, we'll always seek to reduce our impact on the environment with clear, measurable actions. But now we also encourage our guests to respect their own environments and do the right thing for a sustainable future. We are proud to partner with Coca-Cola for the second year running on this brilliant initiative and to educate our guests to reduce, return and recycle their plastic and protect our planet.”

The announcement is the latest in a series of actions from Coca-Cola Great Britain to encourage people to recycle. As part of its global goal, Coca-Cola aims to help collect and recycle a bottle or can for each one it sells by 2030.