Belfast Telegraph

Lapland UK sales set to rise 30% to £6.5m

Revenues at Lapland UK have soared this year as the company attracts an increasing number of parents looking to rekindle the magic of Christmas for their children.

The firm, headed by former City trader Mike Battle, is set to see sales rise by 30% to £6.5 million in 2016, with operating profit approaching the £1 million mark.

Mr Battle told the Press Association that the venue, near Ascot, Berkshire, will have 60,000 visitors come through the doors during the festive period for "something special".

He said: "Lapland UK is an immersive experience aimed at bringing back the magic of Christmas for children.

"Christmas, and particularly the Father Christmas element, has been badly treated and it's not good enough. Here, families are welcomed to the show by elves, kids can spend time in a toy factory building a reindeer and wooden teddy bear and decorate gingerbread men."

Families can also ice skate and visit an elf emporium or bauble shop before meeting Father Christmas at his lodge.

Lapland UK has seen a number of high-profile celebrities enjoy the festivities with their children, including the Beckahms, Jamie Vardy and Emma Bunton.

Mr Battle, who spent the bulk of his 20-year trading career at an independent hedge fund, was head hunted by Goldman Sachs in his 20s, but turned the investment banking behemoth down, fearing he would not see his children grow up.

"This whole project began with me and my wife wanting to give the best Christmas possible for our children. Going to McDonald's to celebrate or paying thousands to go to the Finnish Lapland doesn't really cut it, so we decided to create our own magical experience," he added.