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Man behind viral Willy Wonka experience explains what went wrong in new documentary

Man behind viral Willy Wonka experience explains what went wrong in new documentary

Viewers thought he looked 'broken'

If you have any form of social media, you'll have been unable to escape the viral ''Willy Wonka Experience'. But the organiser has since opened up about the botched event, admitting it's 'ruined his life'.

Parents had taken their kids to a 'chocolate fantasy like never before' in Glasgow last month and were promised that for the price of £35 they could bring their children to Willy's Chocolate Experience, a place where 'dreams become reality'.

The end result was far more of a nightmare than a dream, with visitors saying the attraction was basically just an 'abandoned, empty warehouse' which turned out to be a 'waste of money'.

When families showed up, they discovered the attraction to be little more than a few Willy Wonka themed props strewn about with a bouncy castle in the place.

Ticket-holders believed they were walking into a world of sweet-treats, but were reportedly only given 'a few jelly beans' and 'cold hot dogs' at the event.

Meanwhile, a character that was named 'The Unknown' - wearing a silver mask and a black wig - popped out behind a mirror and was said to be 'an evil chocolate maker' simply just ended up terrifying the kids.

The internet went wild for the footage, sharing memes and skits of the event, but the organiser is said to be left 'traumatised' after the launch failure.

In a new Channel 5 documentary - titled Willy Wonka: The Scandal that Rocked Britain - organiser Billy Coull said that his life has 'been turned upside down' since the event went viral for all the wrong reasons.

Parents demanded refunds.
Stuart Sinclair

The documentary, which aired yesterday (16 March) exposed what happened behind the scenes of the heavily criticized event, which shows Coull speak candidly about the aftermath of the experience.

"I was hoping for an event that would be joyful happy. I wanted people to experience happiness," he said.

He revealed that people have told him to 'end his life' after the event went viral, and that people have deemed him a 'terrible father' online, claiming that he has even been called 'the devil'.

Explaining how it all went so wrong, he told the doc: "I was approached by a very angry parent and then it was just chaos, an absolute nightmare. I did not even see where the anger had come from and before long I was engulfed by angry parents. It was more like mob mentality.

"It was absolute carnage. And at that point I said 'enough's enough, we have to shut this down'."

Coull added: "I never wanted to see any children crying."

Channel 5

Parents have since reached out for ticket refunds, as the company released a statement for customers that read: "I heard from some of you that there’s confusion and concern about refunds not being received from the Willys Chocolate Experience event.

“I want to clear the air and honestly say that yes, while some are still waiting, many have indeed received their refunds. I can’t say sorry enough for the inconvenience this has caused. The fallout from this event has been heart-wrenching.

Stuart Sinclair

“Not just the disappointment, but the real fear and worry from threats made to people not associated with the company and against the director. It’s been tough seeing the hurt these actions have caused.

“If you haven’t seen your refund yet, please check with your bank. They might be able to help sort this out faster.

“From the bottom of my heart, I am truly sorry for the mess.”

After watching the doc, viewers noted how 'traumatised' and 'broken' Coull appeared, with one saying: "I know this was a bad experience and i agree they should get their money back and its not ok to upset kids, but i genuinely hope billy is ok, this is someones mental health and life we are talking about, we say time and time again, be kind, he doesn't deserve death threats."

Another echoed: "Omg why do I feel sorry for Billy though."

Featured Image Credit: Channel 5/X

Topics: News