Express & Star

LEGOLAND Discovery Centre set to open in Birmingham

The first blocks have been laid down as work on a new Legoland gets underway.

Ceremonial dig of more than 90,000 LEGO bricks at LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Birmingham

Birmingham’s new £7m million Legoland Discovery Centre will enable children to step into a giant box of Lego bricks when it opens in time for the school summer holidays next year.

The £7 million Merlin indoor attraction will be located at Arena Birmingham, formally the Barclaycard Arena.

Visitors can expect Lego play areas, interactive rides, master classes from the Lego Master Model Builder, special party rooms for birthdays and a 4D cinema.

There will also be more than three million Lego bricks, with 421,000 being used to create a Miniland including local landmarks.

Supervised by Legoland Discovery Centre mascot Bertie, yesterday Birmingham schoolchildren were given spades to take part in a ground-breaking opening ceremony, digging into over 90,000 bricks at Arena Birmingham, joined by NEC Group CEO Paul Thandi and Marcel Kloos from Merlin.

Paul Thandi, said of the exciting new development: “Merlin’s LEGOLAND Discovery Centre will be an important addition to the leisure and entertainment facilities already provided by the arena and will offer a number of valuable benefits including job creation and by contributing to the overall tourism and leisure offer in the region.

"It will also complement the venue’s existing, exciting events programme, giving our customers even more reasons to visit."

"Working with Merlin to open this attraction is a major step forward as we evolve our leisure and entertainment strategy and together with Merlin’s SEALIFE Centre, we’re further extending the offer in Brindleyplace – a popular destination that already welcomes around 4,600,000 visitors per year."

John Jakobsen, Chief New Openings Officer at Merlin Entertainments, said: “The LEGOLAND Discovery Centre concept has been a huge success across the globe. Uniquely, and most importantly it was always conceived and designed from a child’s perspective so it is a very special place, offering an opportunity for adults and younger children to spend fun, quality time together.”

“The Barclaycard Arena is an exciting destination with a strong tourist proposition, and in an area where we have first-hand experience through operating the SEALIFE Centre in neighbouring Brindleyplace. This attraction will be only the second LEGOLAND Discovery Centre to open in the UK, the other is in Manchester."

The centre is expected to create 50 jobs.