News this week that Cadbury’s is threatened with a hostile takeover by Kraft (not, alas, Kraftwerk).
A few years ago my daughter “persuaded” me to take her to visit Cadbury World in Bournville, Birmingham. This involved a guided tour of the chocolate factory, and a chance to visit the Bournville Museum. You would probably need to be slightly keener on chocolate than I am to get the full benefit of the experience (you seemed to be tasting the stuff for several hours after you’d left) and I’m not sure either that it quite conveyed the reality of the operations of a multi-national corporation such as Cadbury’s has inevitably become.
The village was pleasant, though, if very obviously planned, with an air of high thinking and plain living about it. The lack of pubs would have been a problem for me, I think, though I don’t doubt (much) that what they created there was preferable to what preceded it.
What I did have was the chance to see the cricket ground very close to Cadbury World, the home of the Bournville club, though Worcestershire played a few matches there before the First War and Warwickshire Second XI have played there too more recently.
The pavilion is the outstanding feature, and it was presented to the club by Cadbury’s to mark the coronation of Edward VII. Here, courtesy of the Birmingham Post, it is –
Something about this (and, indeed, the village itself) reminded me of the Holly Lodge Estate in Highate – another example, I suppose, of high-minded planning.
I wonder what the chances are that Kraft, or, indeed, the present-day Cadbury’s would offer to build a pavilion like this for a local cricket club to mark the coronation of Charles III? Not good, I’d wager.