'Idiotic and meaningless': UK county Suffolk scraps tourism slogan

The Curious County website is still up and running, despite the much-criticised slogan being scrapped.
The Curious County website is still up and running, despite the much-criticised slogan being scrapped. 

Tourism authorities in British county of Suffolk have ditched its much-maligned 'Curious County' slogan as part of a new campaign to attract domestic holidaymakers.

The previous motto, along with accompanying Twitter hashtags #curiouscounty and #proudtobecurious, was unveiled in October 2012 but came in for fierce criticism from local MPs.

David Ruffley, MP for Bury St Edmunds, described it as "idiotic and meaningless", adding that "there is nothing curious about what we have to offer", while Dr Therese Coffey, MP for Coastal Suffolk, argued that it did "not give a very clear message" and is "often used as a euphemism for something that is not quite right."

On Monday it was replaced with the less controversial phrase 'Take Me To Suffolk'. The campaign bills Suffolk as Britain's greenest county, and an "ideal spring break" destination. A new website has also been launched at www.takemetosuffolk.com that includes an interactive map allowing visitors to browse suggested holiday itineraries or make up their own.

Despite calling time on the 'Curious County' campaign, a spokeswoman for Visit Suffolk declared it a success.

"It boosted the county's economy by more than £750,000 ($130,770)," she told London's Telegraph. "To say it was a failure would be incorrect."

The slogan was not the first time East Anglian tourism authorities faced derision for their re-branding efforts. In 2010, an attempt to re-brand the Norfolk Broads as "Britain's Magical Waterland" was also heavily criticised.Several other tourism slogans have attracted controversy in recent years.

A plan to promote Edinburgh under the slogan "Incrediburgh" was also dismissed by local politicians, "So where the bloody hell are you?" was shelved by Australian authorities following complaints, and Switzerland's "Get natural" mistaken for an order to undress.

The Telegraph, London

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