Her Majesty The Queen officially opens new Visitors Experience at Coca-Cola Hellenic plant, Lisburn, Co Antrim
Her Majesty The Queen accompanied by His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh today visited the Coca-Cola bottling plant at Knockmore Hill, Lisburn to tour the recently opened factory and to officially open the new Coca-Cola Visitors Centre.
Her Majesty was greeted by Mr George David OBE, Chairman of Coca-Cola Hellenic and Mr Marcel Martin, General Manager before touring the 50,000 square meter manufacturing, bottling and warehousing facility which handles all of Coca-Cola’s production for the island of Ireland.
Coca-Cola Hellenic is Northern Ireland’s leading non-alcoholic beverage company. Its new site at Knockmore Hill in Lisburn represents an investment of £93m and provides employment for approximately 600 people. The state of the art plant has the capacity to produce 250,000 cases of Coca-Cola beverages each day and includes an energy-efficient Combined Heat and Power plant and a new high-tech warehousing system.
A new addition is the Coca-Cola Visitors Experience which was officially opened by Her Majesty, during her visit.
Amongst those present at today’s opening celebrations were Enterprise Minister, Arlene Foster; Jeffrey Donaldson, MP for Lagan Valley; Alderman Paul Porter, the Mayor of Lisburn; and Alastair Hamilton, CEO of Invest Northern Ireland.
Beginning a tour of the facilities Her Majesty met Mr Terence Robinson OBE, former Chairman Coca-Cola Bottlers Ulster, whose father Tom introduced Coca-Cola to Northern Ireland in 1939.
Accompanied by Mr Alan Smith and Mr Alan Hill of Operations, Her Majesty met staff in the Production area and had an opportunity to see the bottle blowing process and samples of pre-forms, moulds and finished products.
In the Laboratory the Royal Visitors met Lab Technicians before moving on to the Can Filling Line where Her Majesty had the opportunity to view the Coca-Cola canning process that helps produce over 32 million unit cases annually.
At the Can Packer Line Her Majesty had the opportunity to see the computerized automotive warehouse racking system and speak with staff.
Her Majesty was welcomed to the Visitors Centre Ms Erica Roseingrave Acting Head of Public Affairs and Communications and Ms Gillian Shields, Visitors’ Centre Manager.
Following words of welcome from Mr Marcel Martin, General Manger, Her Majesty accepted an invitation from him to unveil a plaque to commemorate the opening of the new Centre.
Ms Roseingrave presented Her Majesty with a posy and His Royal Highness with a gift of a commemorative crystal Coca-Cola bottle.
Her Majesty and His Roy Highness accepted an invitation to sign the visitors book at the close of the engagement.
Speaking at the launch General Manager Marcel Martin said:
“It is a great pleasure and honour for us to welcome as our first guests Her Majesty and His Royal Highness to officially declare this centre open.”
“The Coca-Cola Visitors Experience is a symbol of Coca-Cola’s commitment to the local community and builds on a tradition of community support and engagement within Coca-Cola. It will offer guests an opportunity to learn about the history of Coca-Cola in Ireland and gain an insight into the complex production processes behind the famous brand. Blending education and entertainment as well as a chance to experience the magical world of Coca-Cola and sample Coca-Cola’s wide range of beverages, the centre will support the community and voluntary sector and has the capacity to host up to 10,000 guests per year.
I would like to thank Her Majesty and his Royal Highness for demonstrating their much appreciated support for this new community initiative.”
The Coca-Cola Visitors Experience will open its doors for free tours on December 1st 2010. For bookings and general information, please contact the Visitors Centre Coordinator on 02892 642268 or by email: email@example.com
For more information, please contact:
Public Affairs and Communications Manager
Coca-Cola HBC Northern Ireland
Phone number: + 44 28 92 64 2000