A nationwide children’s treasure hunt championed by Cadbury has been pulled following objections from archeologists that it endangered the country’s heritage.
The ‘intensely stupid’ campaign encouraged children to embark on a 'real treasure hunting adventure’ by digging up historic sites around the UK on the lookout for buried loot.
Inviting people to visit the UK’s ‘top treasure hotspots’ the ad advised obtaining a metal detector, despite the fact that people can be prosecuted for digging without the consent of the landowner.
Conceding ground, Cadbury wrote: “It was not our intention to encourage anyone to break existing regulations regarding the discovery of new archeological artifacts and we are grateful this matter has been brought to our attention.
"We can now confirm that the webpage has been taken down and we are updating the content to focus solely on directing families to museums where existing treasures can be found."
Welcoming the campaign’s cancellation Historic England wrote: "There are strict rules that protect England's archeological heritage, including laws governing the use of metal detectors.
"We are glad to see the campaign website is no longer live and would be happy to advise Cadbury to make sure any future campaign doesn't have unwelcome results."
Cadbury recently lost a two-decade-long legal battle to trademark sole rights to its use of the colour purple.