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Merlin Entertainments announces changes to its senior management team

Fiona Eastwood will move from her role as Managing Director, Resort Theme Parks to become Managing Director of Midway leveraging her three years as Global Marketing Director for the Operating Group. Ian Crabbe, currently Divisional Director, Alton Towers Resort, will assume responsibility for Resort Theme Parks. With over 20 years’ experience at Merlin, Ian has recently overseen the management of both Alton Towers and Thorpe Park.

In addition, Merlin has created two new senior management roles to support the delivery of strategic initiatives and executional excellence across the three Operating Groups. Putnam Shin, currently Divisional Director, Midway Asia will be appointed Resort Development Director, and Hywel Mathias, Divisional Director, Midway London will become Midway Development Director.

These changes will support the continued progress of Merlin as a global leader in location-based, family entertainment. Fiona and Ian have significant experience in attraction leadership, and both Hywel and Putnam bring with them to the newly created Development Director roles both operational experience and proven analytic and strategic capability. Their collective skills and insights will be invaluable as we seek to drive more immersive, IP-led experiences for guests and continue the strong momentum in our resort positioning strategy.

Nick Varney, Chief Executive Officer



Simon Whittington

+44 (0)1202 493 011


James Crampton

+44 (0)1202 493 014


Imran Jina / Daniel Holgersson

+44 (0)20 7404 5959

About Fiona Eastwood

  • 2018-19: Managing Director, Resort Theme Parks
  • 2015-18: Global Marketing Director, Midway, Merlin Entertainments
  • 2014-15: Director Brands, Global Markets, BBC Worldwide
  • 2012-14: Managing Director, Consumer Products, BBC Worldwide
  • 2010-11: Commercial Director, Doctor Who, BBC Worldwide
  • 2008-10: Head of Global Market Planning, BBC Worldwide
  • 1991-2007: Various marketing roles

About Ian Crabbe

  • 2009-19: Divisional Director, Alton Towers Resort
  • 2003-09: General Manager, National SEA LIFE Centre, Birmingham
  • 2000-03: General Manager, Dungeons: London, York, Edinburgh & Hamburg
  • 1995-2000: Leadership roles, SEA LIFE, UK
  • 1970-1995: Various leadership roles in motorway service industry

About Putnam Shin

  • 2015-19:  Divisional Director, Midway Asia, Merlin Entertainments
  • 2014-15:  Corporate Development Director, Merlin Entertainments
  • 2010-14:  Partner, L.E.K. Consulting
  • 2008-10:  Corporate Strategy Manager, The Walt Disney Company
  • 2005-08:  Engagement Manager, L.E.K. Consulting
  • 2003-05:  MBA, Harvard Business School
  • 2000-02:  Investment Banker, Merrill Lynch

About Hywel Mathias

  • 2015 – 2019:  Divisional Director, London Midway Attractions
  • 2014 – 2015:  Brand Director, Dungeons
  • 2013 – 2014:  General Manager, The London Dungeon
  • 2013 – 2013:  Regional General Manager, Asia
  • 2012 – 2013:  General Manager, Madame Tussauds Australia
  • 2007 – 2012:  Commercial Director, Chessington World of Adventures Resort
  • 2000 – 2007:  Various roles, Network Rail, M&S and Burger King