First Elmer ride coming to Chessington next spring

The first-ever theme park ride will headline a full calendar or activity for the patchwork elephant in 2020, following a stellar 30th anniversary this year

Written by Rhys Thomas

Posted 27.11.2019 | Events

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The first-ever Elmer theme park ride will open at Cheddington World of Adventures in 2020, headlining a full year of activity for the beloved storybook brand.

Set to open at Chessington World of Adventures Resort in spring 2020 as part of a four-year partnership, Elmer’s Flying Jumbos will be the first-ever Elmer themed ride, with more details said to be teased in the new year.

Joanna Teasdale, Marketing Director at Chessington World of Adventures Resort, says: ”We’re delighted to be bringing to life another children’s book here at the Resort and introduce the first-ever Elmer themed ride. Elmer is a natural fit for us here at ‘Britain’s Wildest Adventure’ and we can’t wait to see families enjoy the patchwork elephant’s story in a brand new way.”

The partnership follows a stellar 30th anniversary this year, which resulted in the biggest ever sales of Elmer in the UK: combined sales for paperback and board book of over 45,000 is an increase of 35 per cent year-on-year, according to Nielsen Bookscan. And Andersen Press promises to continue that momentum in 2020 with an ambitious roadmap of activity to raise Elmer’s profile and create an even bigger year for the patchwork elephant.

Elmer’s Big Art Parades raised a combined £765,000 for charity

Further partnerships and initiatives have kept the conversation around Elmer at the fore throughout the year include the hugely successful Elmer’s Big Art Parades, an initiative that raised a combined £765,000 for hospices in Newcastle, Ipswich and Plymouth. Kidscape on their Friendship Friday initiative saw Elmer patchwork socks in the market for the first time, also raising funds for the charity, and Elmer and Friends, the first ever illustration retrospective from creator David McKee, welcomed more than 50,000 visitors.

Looking toward 2020 Andersen Press and Elmer licensing agent Metrostar have responded to the need of licensees and the market as a whole for a bigger presence on Instagram, and specialist agency License to PR has been brought on to run a calendar of consumer awareness campaigns and retail launches.

More activity to come in 2020 includes:

- Elmer Day on 23rd May, with free event packs available for bookshops, nurseries, libraries and schools and extensive tours for storyteller and costume throughout May half term.

- Seven Stories’ Elmer and Friends exhibition to finish at their Newcastle home in April, before starting a 3 year UK tour, the first venue is River and Rowing Museum, Henley on Thames set to open in June 2020.

- Further Elmer’s Big Art Parades planned, a family art trail in partnership with Heart of Kent Hospice in Maidstone will launch June 2020.

- Further activity with anti-bullying charity Kidscape, including Friendship Friday 2020 on 6th November.

- Much more to be announced in 2020!

Paul Black, Brand and PR Director for Andersen Press, says: “2019 has been an incredible year for our patchwork elephant, with blockbuster sales and an incredible reaction to Elmer around the country. Looking to 2020 we’re delighted to continue the hard work put in, but to extend our reach with some key new partnerships.

"I for one cannot wait to ride on Elmer’s Flying Jumbos, and know Chessington World of Adventures is the ideal headline partner for us for 2020. I’ll see you at the resort next Spring!”

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