Merlin’s magic brings World Book Day to life for CASE trainees

Actors from the York Dungeon joined trainees at CASE Training Services in Hull to bring stories to life on World Book Day.
Actors from the York Dungeon joined trainees at CASE Training Services in Hull to bring stories to life on World Book Day.

A global leader in the entertainment industry brought a touch of magic to World Book Day with a double performance to support a local charity with its 35th anniversary celebrations.

Merlin Entertainments, which operates more than 130 attractions in 25 countries worldwide, sent actors from their local popular attraction the York Dungeon to present two shows based on Roald Dahl’s “The Twits” for trainees at CASE Training Services.

The company also donated free tickets for York Dungeon and SEA LIFE in Scarborough for CASE to use as raffle prizes at the many activities planned during the rest of its milestone year.

Steve Rusling, Marketing Manager at CASE, said: “The trainees were absolutely thrilled to experience the performances which were so much more fun than the usual World Book Day dressing up activities.

“We’re delighted and very grateful that such a big organisation as Merlin Entertainments felt able to support us in our work, especially as they are very keen to get involved in more projects going forward.”

Merlin is one of the world’s biggest entertainment organisations and welcomes millions of visitors every year to attractions which include the Dungeons, SEA LIFE, Legoland and theme parks such as Alton Towers.

The business is committed to working with people and communities and Anna Carline, Displays Manager at the York Dungeon, said the performances by actors Olivia Cole and Alex Laurean were consistent with the work of the Merlin’s Magic Wand charity set up by the company to help children facing serious illness, disability or adversity.

Anna said: “We have fostered a good relationship with CASE over the past year delivering some Lego building and supporting the pantomime production. We decided to stay closely involved because the people at CASE are such a lovely team and because events like this are not routinely available to adults.

“The York Dungeon support a lot of local charities and we are looking forward to doing a lot more with CASE in the future.”

CASE Training Services was founded in 1985 and plays a key role in the Hull and East Yorkshire community with its work to improve life choices for people with a learning disability through high quality training, support and employment opportunities.

The anniversary has been supported by the Hull Daily Mail, which has pledged its support by adopting CASE as its charity of the year for 2020, and award-winning restaurant 1884 Wine & Tapas Bar has joined forces with Hull’s acclaimed tour guide, Paul Schofield, to present an Old Town walk with quiz supper on Thursday 21 May.

Hull-based JayJay Media stepped up to produce a new promotional video for CASE at a discounted rate and NatWest provided support by advising trainees and staff about online security and highlighting the Friends Against Scams initiative as part of Safer Internet Day.

Steve said: “It’s a big anniversary for us this year and we’re getting a lot of backing from businesses in our area. Some of it comes from direct financial donations and there is also support in kind with expertise and organisational help.

“We hope the work of Merlin Entertainments will inspire other businesses to get involved whether by working with us directly or by organising their own fundraising events with staff, clients or the general public. We’ve got plenty of ideas and we just need people to help us deliver them.”

To find out more about CASE Training Services and its programme of 35th anniversary activities please email Steve Rusling at and to book for the Old Town tour and tapas please visit

[Phil Ascough – Ascough Associates]

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